Tuesday Tidbits for Parents: April 28, 2020
A couple of weeks ago, Pastor Matt shared the story of a little girl named Ruby Bridges in his sermon. One of the most moving parts of this story is how Ruby responded to the hatred and threats spewed toward her as she walked to school each morning. Ruby recounts,
From her window, Mrs. Henry always watched me walk into the school. One morning when I got to our classroom, she said she’d been surprised to see me talk to the mob. “I saw your lips moving,” she said, “but I couldn’t make out what you were saying to those people.”
“I wasn’t talking to them,” I told her. “I was praying for them.” Usually I prayed in the car on the way to school, but that day I’d forgotten until I was in the crowd. Please be with me, I’d asked God, and be with those people too. Forgive them because they don’t know what they’re doing.” 
But where on earth did a little 6-year-old girl learn to pray for her enemies? Where did she learn to ask God to forgive the adults who threatened to kill her on a regular basis? Ruby answers this question for us. She goes on to say,
That reminded me of what Mama had taught us about God, that he is always there to protect us. [...] “Remember, if you get afraid, say your prayers. You can pray to God anytime, anywhere. He will always hear you.” That was how I started praying on the way to school. The things people yelled at me didn’t seem to touch me. Prayer was my protection. 
Ruby’s parents were uneducated.  They didn’t have access to the latest Christian parenting books by the hottest Christian authors. They couldn’t listen to parenting podcasts or use any of the other wonderful (and super helpful) resources we have access to today. But what they did have was a deep and abiding faith in the God of the universe. They had the presence and guidance of the Spirit of the living God. So they had all they needed to live a life of faith (2 Peter 1:3) and to teach their children to do the same, even in the face of very real danger.
Be encouraged! The same is true for each of us who have put our faith in Christ. So you CAN do this! You don’t have to have all the answers for your kids. You don’t have to have degrees in theology. Just show/tell your kids what you DO know about our God. Then keep learning. And keep telling. Even the tiniest and earliest seeds we plant and water can be grown by God to produce a transformative, life-long faith in our children.
Abon and Lucille Bridges didn’t know what trouble would come as they walked the hard road or how everything would turn out in the end. But what they did know was that God could be trusted. They taught this truth to Ruby and also taught her to pray (amongst other things). That’s intentional discipleship right there. We can be sure they didn't get everything right as parents, but God used their intentional discipleship to bring Ruby from death to eternal life (and to change our country for the better).  Might He use our efforts, however grand or small, to do the same thing in the lives of our kids (and world).