Imagine for a moment that your daughter was sitting on the railroad tracks and you heard the train whistle blowing. Would you warn her to get off the tracks? Or would you hesitate, worried that she might think you were being overprotective? If she ignored your warning, would you quickly move her to a safe place? Of course you would! Your love for your daughter would override all other considerations. You would value her life more than her temporary goodwill.
Challenges and temptations are coming at our teenagers with the speed and power of a freight train. As we are reminded in the family proclamation, parents are responsible for the protection of their children. That means spiritually as well as physically. --Larry R. Lawrence
My daughters and I were able to attend a fireside recently. The speaker was Ardeth Kapp. She shared the following experience:
”I remember one evening years ago, while attending a Sunday school party, I looked at the clock, and it was past the time I was told to be home. Just then a knock came on the door. I was horrified—my dad had come after me. I felt humiliated in front of my friends. I thought I wanted to die. I was not pleasant with my dad; disobedience never makes one pleasant.
“A few years later, my friends and I were driving home from a dance across an Indian reservation, ten miles from any shelter. It was 40 degrees below zero, and the wind chill continued to lower the temperature. A few miles farther into the blizzard, we discovered that there was no heat in the car.
Then the car froze up and would not run. We came to a slow stop. Wewatched the snow swirling in front of us only until the windows quickly froze over. We were quiet and sober as we contemplated our fate—our lives were in danger. The silence was broken as a friend in the backseat asked, ‘How long do you think it will be before your dad will get here?’
“Why do you think they thought my dad would come? One time I had thought I wanted to die because he had come after me. This time we lived because my dad came through the blizzard to save my life and the lives of my friends. This time I was pleasant with my dad—pleasant and very grateful”
It's a blessing to be friends to our children. But even more important, is the ability to know when our children need a parent more than they need a friend.