Some people have likened the “neglect of training children” to leaving the gate open and the horse getting out. I think a better allegory is: Trying to get sugar out of the tea when you’ve over-sweetened it. You can sometimes get a horse back into the corral but it is very difficult to dip the sugar back out of a liquid.
When our grandchildren were teens they really liked a lot of sugar in their tea and sometimes I would get too much. I would tell them, “if it’s not sweet enough, tell me and I will add more…if it’s too sweet, I will take some sugar out.” Of course they knew I couldn’t do that…I could just dilute the tea with more and make it ok.
That is all we can do about our children when it is too late….just try to dilute the garbage we have allowed, with the good stuff. May be the only hope we have left at that point. How sad that is! Because there are so very many little teachable moments while they are growing up, at whichever age they happen to be…but we do have to be with them to take advantage of those teachable moments.
Most adult children do not come back…at least until it is too late to train their own little ones. We have seen many though the years ‘get faithful’ after their children are grown up. If you have young children and you are faithful to God now, while they are growing up, be so thankful and give Him the glory for His grace. Generations have a tendency to repeat themselves either for good or for evil. God tells us to completely surround our children with His Word while they are growing up.
Deuteronomy 6: 5-9 “…And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might. And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up. And thou shalt bind them for a sign upon thine hand, and they shall be as frontlets between thine eyes. And thou shalt write them upon the posts of thy house, and on thy gates.”
Time is fleeting and their growing up years fade into adult years before we are hardly aware of it.