Straight As An Arrow


A husband and wife who worked for the circus went to an adoption agency. In hearing of their desire to adopt a child, social workers naturally raised doubts about their suitability, given their circus lifestyle. In response, the couple produced photos of their 45-foot motor home, which was clean, well-maintained, and equipped with a nice bedroom for the child. Still concerned, the social workers raised questions about the education a child would receive on the road. The husband and wife replied, “We have arranged for a tutor who will teach the child all the usual subjects along with French, Spanish, and some computer skills.” Feeling better about the request, the social workers probed one more time regarding being raised in a circus environment. They were assured that there were seventeen other children with circus parents who were well-adjusted and cared for. The nanny they had selected for the child was a certified expert in pediatric care, welfare, and diet. Having all their questions answered, the social workers were finally satisfied and asked the couple, “What age child are you hoping to adopt?” The couple answered, “It doesn’t really matter, as long as the kid fits into the cannon.”

I’m not sure about firing kids out of canons in a circus routine, yet in Psalm 127, the Bible encourages the Christian parent to see their child as an arrow in their hand which they get to shape, direct and release into enemy territory (Psalm 127:4). Arrows are an offensive weapon to be fired at the enemy. The implication of that image is that the raising of a godly family, children who love the Lord and hate evil, is one of the chief means of advancing God’s kingdom on earth (Mal. 2:15). Leading our child to faith in Christ is to badly hurt the kingdom of darkness and to greatly help the kingdom of light. Parenting is an element of spiritual warfare where we as warriors get to inflict a wound on the enemy by raising our children to fight the good fight of faith (Eph. 6:10-18; 1 Tim. 6:12).

One, we need to shape our children in the gospel. No arrow begins straight. The warrior must take the branch and then shape it and whittle it down into a straight shaft. It is the same with our children who come to us bent out of shape by sin (Ps. 51:5; 58:3). We need to restrain and train them (Proverbs 29:15; 22:6). We need to teach them the Scriptures that are able to make them wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus (2 Tim. 1:5-6, 3:15). 

Two, as a warrior picks a target, we need to direct our sons and daughters toward a life lived in relationship with God, for God’s glory, and according to kingdom priorities (Matt. 6:33; Proverbs 3:5-6). Our desire as parents is that our children hit the target of God’s best.

Three, we need to work toward releasing our children out into life in the joyful anticipation that, like an arrow, they will go to places we cannot and accomplish things we have not (Ps. 18:29). There are few joys in life greater than watching our children walk fast and far in the truth (3 John 4). 

As a Christian parent, the Bible commands you, “Ready, steady, aim, fire!”