Psalm 127:3-5 – “Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, the fruit of the womb a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior are the children of one’s youth. Blessed is the man who fills his quiver with them! He shall not be put to shame when he speaks with his enemies in the gate.”
As a parent of four young children, it is such a good reminder to me that my children are not only a heritage from the Lord, but they are also fruit. What does that mean? Our heritage is some property of ours that is inherited. It is a part of our possession. Our children are our possession, our property. But not only that, but they are also “the fruit of the womb a reward.” They are both our product, something we have produced through the creative genius of God, and are therefore our reward.
Let’s be honest for a second. There are days as a parent, that our kids do not feel like a reward. Yet, it may be the fact that they are our fruit, that makes it that they don’t feel like much of a reward to us! You may in fact feel like your children, who are a heritage from the Lord, feel more like that lemon car that you possess that you are constantly putting money into! While there are varying degrees of struggle that you have with your children, at the end of the day, they are still God’s gift to you that you don’t often struggle to love. You know that though they might rebel or turn their back on you, you will always be waiting for them to return.
Solomon continues in verses 4 and 5 when he likens children to arrows in the hand of a warrior. He even goes so far as to say, “Blessed is the man who fills his quiver with them!” As you look at your children in their good times and their bad times, remind yourselves that your children are a blessing from God.
I love the symbolism of our children being arrows. As warriors in a battle, Solomon likens our arrows to weapons to be used at our disposal. As you raise your children, how does it change your parenting philosophy to see your children as arrows in a quiver? You can easily miss the significance of this symbolism if you over-emphasize the quiver aspect. If you constantly consider your children as filling a quiver, you’ll miss the fact that your children are actually weapons of war. Arrows are not meant to be hidden in a quiver their whole life, they are meant to be launched into the battle.
If the call on our life as followers of Christ is to make disciples of Jesus Christ who make disciples of Jesus Christ, then it should be clearly seen that our children are to be loved, trained, equipped, and then sent out to the frontlines of ministry for the sake of accomplishing our mission. Given the war that this world is constantly fighting, our children have to be raised and trained to see themselves as weapons of war. If they are going to be useful in the kingdom of God, they must be trained to be launched!
How might this change the way you parent your children? Does helicopter parenting effectively equip your children to be launched? How much do you shelter them from the realities of this life? Does sheltering them simply dull them. May we see the call God has placed on our lives to not just love our children, but also to prepare them and ready them for war!