When it comes to raising godly sons, we as mothers have an important part to play. Scripture sets an example for us to exhort our sons. This post is not meant to downplay the father’s influence on his son in any way. Fathers have a very important part to play, and a mother can’t replace the role of a father.
However, I want to encourage mothers that God expects us to lovingly and gracefully instruct our sons, directing them in the paths of righteousness. Proverbs 31, the prophecy taught to King Lemuel by his mother, is a prime example of this.
We live in a fallen and immoral world, where our sons are constantly bombarded by messages designed to attack their masculinity; steer them into the paths of fornication; and promote hard play rather than hard work. So how should we respond?
1) Teach Our Sons To “Flee Youthful Lusts”
What, my son? and what, the son of my womb? and what, the son of my vows? Give not thy strength unto women, nor thy ways to that which destroyeth kings. Proverbs 31:2-3
It is not difficult to see why King Lemuel’s mother opened up with the topic of women. We see numerous examples from history of how great men were destroyed because of their lack of self-control or integrity in this department. In scripture, great men like Samson, David, and Solomon did not escape the venomous, lust-filled, serpent bite.
We can teach our sons by opening the word of God with them, allowing them to see for themselves how lust destroys great men and even nations. Show them modern-day examples too. They need to understand where this sin will lead.
In addition to guarding our homes against perversion – by ensuring that there are no opportunities for our children to view, hear, or read inappropriate content; we must also guard them against external influences. These can include peers, communities, or anything they happen to walk past, see or hear in public spaces that is against God. In this world, our children will encounter sin and evil, but what we teach our children when we encounter these things is what matters most.
We can teach them how to view the world through a biblical lens. For instance, when my husband or myself are out with our children and we happen to walk past an immodestly dressed woman or see a sexually perverted poster etc. we teach our children to look in the opposite direction or we completely avoid taking a certain route. We then explain from the word of God why we are taking those actions.
We teach them scriptures such as 2 Timothy 2:22, “flee also youthful lust” and Psalm 101:3, “I will set no wicked thing before mine eyes.” All while encouraging them to follow Joseph's wonderful example of integrity, who escaped quickly, making no attempt to play with fire, and chose not to entertain the flirtatiousness of Potiphar's wife.
2) Teach Them the Beauty of Marriage: Teach by Example - Be a Good Wife.
As culture tries to demean and destroy marriage, making it seem burdensome as if it were a life sentence. What can we do to fight back?
Again, we can combat culture by teaching our sons what God's word has to say about marriage. They need to see that marriage was designed by God as a reflection of Him and His bride. Explain how God uses the union of marriage to bring children into the world and to establish families, churches, societies, and nations. There are numerous biblical examples to draw from, perhaps even your own.
I am convinced that one of the greatest ways we as mothers can influence our sons, is by modelling the beauty of marriage in our own homes. As scripture puts it, we ought to be good wives. Believe it or not, our sons are watching our example. As wives, how is our attitude toward our homes and our husbands? Do we honour our husbands, showing them respect and reverence? Is our home a pleasant place, where our husbands and children feel welcome, comfortable, and safe? What is our relationship with our husbands teaching our sons?
Where I'm going with this is that when our sons see our relationship with our spouse, it should cause them to look forward to a marriage of their own one day. The last thing we want as mothers is to be a stumbling block in our marriage, causing our sons to be put off from it.
3) Remove Mindless Non-Edifying Activities From Their Lives
“a child left to himself, bringeth his mother shame.” Proverbs 29:15
Don’t allow your sons to engage in hours of mindless unedifying activities.
I know it seems like the easy thing to do. You had a long day and you feel like you need some time for yourself, so you allow your sons to game for an hour or two or three; while you have some "me" time. No harm in that right?
The problem is that far too often this routine becomes the norm. The gaming lifestyle often becomes a way of escape for both the parent and the child. Not only can this lead to disengagement and involvement in our child's life, but it can also become an outlet of escape from the real world and real responsibilities.
Today more than ever, boys are not growing up. Instead of getting married, and finding purpose in providing and caring for a family, they are stuck, living in the basement of their parent's home, glued to a flat screen. Weeks turn into months, months into years, and often years into decades.
Instead of training our sons to escape to a fantasy world, we need to train them to embrace the call that God has for them in this very real world. Instead, fill your son's schedule with meaningful activities. Spend time with your sons; learn their interests and giftings and provide them with opportunities to develop and learn new skills. Skills that will benefit them in the years to come. Skills that will help them provide for a family one day.
Am I saying we should never spend time playing games? No. However, rather than leaving our children alone for hours on end playing video games, encourage family time. Spend time together over a board game; visit friends and family together; open up your home for hospitality; work on a project together; assign them chores or help someone in need.
Allow your sons to see what makes family life special. Allow them to see the importance of hard work and a good work ethic. Allow them to experience and understand God's design for marriage, family, and relationships.
As Christian moms, we need to do like scripture says and redeem the time because the days are evil. Instead of being slothful, we must be prudent by not allowing our sons to mar their purity by engaging in the sin-filled culture. In addition to guarding our homes against evil influences and perversion, we must teach them the word of God, helping them to embrace God's design for marriage and family rather than the world's ideology.
While culture tries to demean marriage, we mothers need to be on the defence by embracing our marriages, being good wives to our husbands, and cultivating an atmosphere of love and fruitfulness in the home. This allows our sons to see the beauty of marriage and family life, naturally causing them to desire a family of their own one day.
We must rid our son's lives of mindless, unfruitful activities and replace them with days that are filled with edification, hard work, responsibility, and family time.
Mothers, we cannot follow today's norms and sign our sons up for the trash can culture that is trying to destroy them. We are on a mission, and we must not allow the enemy, laziness, ignorance, or anything to divert us from it. Our mission is simply this; to serve the Lord by lovingly, nurturing our children, and raising godly seed for the glory of God. By God’s grace, we will!