Raising Our Sons to Seek After God

Raising our Sons to Seek After God

I couldn’t stand it a minute longer.

I just had to check on him. Make sure he was okay after receiving such a blow. Such a devastating blow for a young man. How would he recover? I was aching to know.

But our son had closed himself off in his room to work it through. Alone. And there was nothing I could do for him. Nothing for this mama to do but wait outside the door and pray.

It seemed so quiet in there. Awfully quiet.

And then I heard him.

I could hear his voice. He was singing his heart out to the Lord. Calling on His Name. Pouring out his pain before Him.

Our son was seeking after God.

So when did that happen? When did that subtle change from boyhood to manhood begin? And when did he start looking less to us and more to Christ?

These are the questions that have been much on my mind lately. Not only as I watch this same son continue to draw near to God, but as I consider his three much-younger brothers. What about those little guys? Will they grow up to follow Him?

All the boys1

How can a mom encourage her boys

to seek after God?

Don’t make mama the answer.  When our sons are little, it’s only natural for mom to be their source of wisdom and comfort. But as they get older, we need to encourage them to increasingly go to Christ with their questions and problems. When he’s facing an issue – rather than handing out the answer – challenge him to pray about it and search the Word for himself.

Model what you want for him. Quietly. Be a godly example to him and then invite him to follow. For instance, when our son was about 12 he was invited by his dad to join him for his morning devotions before everyone else got up. It wasn’t something they did together, just side-by-side. Somehow this felt more like a privilege than a burden to our growing man. Not a have-to, but a get-to occasion. Two men coming together before The Lord in the early hours.

Don’t blink when he stumbles. My inclination is to panic when our son struggles, or even when he falls. But he needs to see that I’ve not lost my confidence in him or the God who holds him. If your son makes a mistake? Don’t condemn and don’t give up. Give him the chance to make it right. Give him the chance to grow.

Talk less and listen more. I think one of my biggest challenges as his mom is to bite my tongue and simply listen. To hold back my fountain of wisdom and hear him out instead. Our oldest son has told me straight out that my quiet listening spoke louder to him than just about anything else I said or did. (You can read more here: By Listening)

Fight for him through prayer. I don’t think I really understood “wrestling prayer” until I had a teenaged son. Not that he was so much trouble, but that he faced such intense disappointment, challenges, and temptation. The Enemy seems rather determined to take these young men out – before they ever have a chance to grow strong. So his dad and I have often laid awake at night, agonizing in prayer for him.  We prayed for protection, strength, and courage for him. Still do.

I’m grateful that these sons are in God’s loving hands. I pray that they come to know Him, walk with Him, and seek Him with all their hearts. And I pray the same for yours.

Because The Lord has good things in store for our young men.

The young lions suffer want and hunger;

but those who seek The Lord lack no good thing.

~ Psalm 34:10 ~

In His grace,
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  • http://heatherhaupt.com Heather

    Oh this spoke to my heart today. As a momma of 3 boys, I think often about this topic. Thank you for the encouragement.

  • http://www.ziebartfamily.com Hallie

    don’t make mama the answer. i plan to hold that dear and close, as i face my fears and insecurities of raising a boy to whom i did not give birth… and yet love with all my heart.
    keep the good stuff about raising boys coming! i NEED to know!

  • http://club31women.com/ Lisa

    Bless you, Hallie! I’m praying for you and all that the Lord has for you and your family. Love you!

  • Nikki

    Thank-you so much for this! I have 3 sons 18,16,9 (and 3 daughters 11,6,5). They are all great kids but each has his or her own challenges. My eldest graduates this year and it is a bittersweet time and I am trying to get him to do exactly this, seek after God for himself. I know I can not force a relationship with the Lord or secure his salvation for him. Me and my husband didn’t start out following the Lord as we should but we have grown over the years. That does leave many things that should’ve been done differently and a mama who needs to be fighting in prayer. Thankfully, the children have always been in a family that follows the Lord (to the degree we knew how at the time), church and at a Christian school or homeschooled, so they know all the truths but my eldest needs to take them for his own. Thanks again for the advice and encouragement.

  • http://christyfitzwater.com Christy Fitzwater

    This is so, so good, Lisa. I especially need to hear that momma should not be the answer anymore. I really needed this. Thanks so much!!

  • http://www.aheartforthehome.com Jennifer

    Thank you for the post! I’m raising 7 children…two of which are boys! They are very different than the girls for sure! But…I appreciate this encouragement today!

  • Coby

    This is SO. GOOD. I have 3 boys who are all still little, but I think about this very subject all the time. I especially needed to hear “don’t make mama the answer”; as someone who likes to “fix things,” I need to remember that it’s okay to just back off. Thank you for this.

  • L P

    There was one night when my teenaged son had been alone in his room. Very quiet. I thought he might be, um, well, I’m not proud of what I thought he was doing. But I was very pleased to open the door (after knocking) and find him deep in his devotional. He had been reading and praying, reading and praying about a difficult issue. That’s why he’d been quiet for so long. He was seeking the Lord’s advice.

    I have tried to surround my son with Godly men. Men who walk the walk. Not just dad (who is great) but others. And we’ve talked about courage. We openly admit that we are weird for the Lord. Out of step at times with the culture. We know we’re different, and we’re ok with it. That’s a family motto now, We’re weird for the Lord.

  • http://www.morningjoycompositions.com Jeri Lynn

    God blessed my husband and I with 6 sons (& 3 daughters). I am still learning as the mother of teen sons – this article is excellent and encouraging! Thank you.

  • http://www.womenabiding.com Tehila

    Lisa, you have touched on a heartstring for me here! I loved your Godly and practical tips, and I’m going to start living out each and every one. Our boys are only 5 and 8 years old right now, but our prayers and souls’ yearning is for them to grow up to know, love, follow, and revere the Lord in their lives!

    Thank you also for showing me that I too, and not only their dad, have a responsibility and play a crucial role in their lives!

    This post is a keeper where I can refer to it often!
    Blessings to you, dear friend!

  • Joy

    I have one boy and 3 girls. My son is the oldest of the 3 still at home and he’s a wonderful young man of 17. He’s a junior in high school this year and wants to go into missions. His dad and I are so very proud of him!! I loved what you had to say in your letter and it made me think alot!! His dad and I try to be as intentional as possible in raising all of our children and any and all Godly advise is a blessing. Thank you so much for sharing and God bless you!!!

  • http://embracingrace.com Leah

    I enjoyed reading this today. I have one son and he’s only 6, yet often I find myself lost when it comes to raising a son. My husband and our son already have daily devotions together before anyone else gets up. Our son actually comes and gets my husband- it’s been a real bonding time for both of them. I’ve been thankful for my husband taking this type of leadership, and I am excited to see how God will use it in our son’s future. Thanks for this post!

  • http://quietworkings.com Amanda

    I really enjoyed your post. I found your blog through the linky part at womenlivingwell.org. I have an 18mo old son and have already struggled with thoughts of whether or not he will follow the Lord when he is older. I know prayer is key. Your thoughts above were so encouraging as well.

  • Stacy

    Thank you! As the mama to two boys and one on the way this was a real encouragement to me. My constant prayer is that my boys will grow up and love the Lord ALL the days of their lives . These are certainly some practical tips to nurture that path.

  • Marita Larry

    I too have 3 boys…you have spoken well for so many of us who long to have our sons grow in Christ. We have been so blessed to watch them grow and mature and to watch them in their faith is so precious!! Thank you for sharing…God bless!

  • Lori TenHaken

    Thank you dear sister for sharing your wonderful wisdom with us mommas of boys. I for one needed this drastically. Sometimes I just don’t know what to do to get to them. Your wise counsel helped incredibly. Thank you for listening to God…
    Blessings,
    Lori

  • http://mamalotsoftots.Wordpress.com Sarah

    Thank you for this! I have a son who is about to enter the teen years, and I want to parent him the best I can to encourage a strong relationship with God.
    It’s new territory for me. Just trying to learn as best I can how to handle tough situations now before they strike and I’m left dumbfounded. :)
    Thank you so much for sharing this!

  • kathy

    lovely! my sons are men now, and I didn’t bring them up as I should have spiritually, but I do remember my son being hurt when his dad, suffering from alcoholism, disappointed him again. I told my son he had a Heavenly Father that will always be there for him. hopefully he moves toward The Father, who never fails, is trustworthy and true.

  • http://anetintimeschooling.weebly.com/a-net-in-time-blog.html annette @ A Net In Time

    I very much enjoyed reading this blog post. Gives me something to aim for.

  • http://designwgrace.blogspot.com/ Jane Mathews

    What a beautiful post! Thank you for your wisdom and encouragement…as a Mom of two young men, I am always gleaning from other godly women! Bless you abundantly! -Jane

  • AmberK

    Thank you. Thank you for this post. We have three sons and we’ve just entered the late teens with one of them. He’s struggling and it hurts SO badly. Prayer is all we have and it feels so small…I don’t know why. Because I know it is THE most powerful thing he has supporting him.

  • http://protectthecause.weebly.com Tracy Slonaker

    Your message is clear and right on the money. But I also want to commend you on your excellent writing style! Thank you for using your gift to glorify God!

  • Kelley

    Thank you so much. In today’s world raising a child is down right scary, but these tips are great and have such an impact. I appreciate your fountain of wisdom.

  • Tiffany Dages

    Like so many of the other Mom’s commenting I have three boys as well! They are 2, 4, and 6. This post touched my heart and was a great encouragement. I agree with you all in prayer that our sons will be raised up a generation of mighty warriors that are passionate for The Lord’s call.

  • http://lisabranam.com Lisa @ A Little Slice of Life

    Wonderful tips. I pray for my son every day and try my best to model for him. when I read the part about your son crying out to God I got chills. I hope and pray my son will do the same thing.

  • kristy

    Im so thankful I came accross this today. I have 4 boys and 3 girls. It seems there is soo much available about raising Godly young ladies and not enough on raising young men. I read this twice and intend on reading it often. Thank you!!

  • http://www.myeverydayramblings.blogspot.com Mapipi

    Thank you for sharing this. I am a mum of two boys 3 and 5 and sometimes I find myself feeling scared of how I will guide them to love God even more. I am blessed with a hubby who also loves God and is always sharing with them the Word and finding myself thinking maybe there is more we could do.. Thank you again.

  • http://mercysavedme.blogspot.com Piper

    Thank you for this!! So many times I am at a loss with our teen son. I have been in a Gentleness Challenge since the beginning of the year and God pointed out how I am usually a “yeller” when my children don’t listen. I allow satan to stir my pot! I have grown so much yet, there are days that I just don’t know what to do! I find that I have always wanted to “fix” everything, and I am not the “fixer”! God has a plan for everything in our lives and that includes what happens with our children. Sometimes life hurts and we have to find our way and its the same for them. I remind myself daily that its my job to point them to Christ and it must be something they see, not that they just hear! We must be doers of the word so that our children will see the blessings that come from the Lord!
    Your newest subscriber!

  • http://www.lifeunderthesun.com/ Rachel @ Life Under the Sun

    Such good suggestions. My boys are younger, but it’s a similar challenge. I just wrote about some lessons they’ve been learning. http://www.lifeunderthesun.com/bringing-up-boys-3-lessons-to-help-them-learn/

  • http://club31women.com/ Lisa

    Thank you, Rachel, for sharing! I’d love to read what they’ve been learning.

  • Laura

    I am currently pregnant with our first child, a boy. We are both thrilled beyond words to finally be parents. I am so glad I found this. The thing that I worry about the most is my child building his own relationship with Christ. Other than praying for him, I wasn’t sure where to start. I have been praying for him since before he was conceived (he’s our miracle baby), and I started reading the Power of a Praying Parent soon after, so it’s nice to have another parent’s take on raising a man of God. It’s just nice to know that I am not the only one with his spiritual health and growth at the forefront. Too many people focus on what “mom” can do to make him be the perfect adult, when it’s not about us as the parents at all.

  • http://www.ourbeautifulblessings.com Bronwyn

    This was beautiful & wonderful words of advice. It brought tears to my eyes as I read it while holding my 4 month old baby boy.

  • Andrea

    I so needed this I have 3 sons 2 are adults and 1 only ten. He goes to church ans prays but is getting a little to much caught up with the world lately. My older ones walked away. I pray for them every day to come back to the lord for people to cross their paths . They Live 700 miles away ans won’t recieve from me nor see my quite example. Their father is still not fully walking with the Lord but I claim it.

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