“Like a Weaned Child,” Part 1
Psalm 131 LORD, my heart is not haughty, nor my eyes lofty. Neither do I concern myself with great matters, nor with things too profound for me. Surely I have calmed and quieted my soul, like a weaned child with his mother; like a weaned child is my soul within me. O Israel, hope in the LORD from this time forth and forever.
This short psalm is such a tender picture that it sometimes hides the power of what’s being presented here. The psalmist’s soul has been through a process that leaves him like a weaned child with his mother. There are two words here that stand out in describing the mature and peaceful position of the child: weaned and with. And both speak to us as adults.
First the child is weaned. There is an independence here; the child is no longer directly dependent upon the mother for sustenance, as a baby and toddler is with his/her mother. How about you now? Is there a dependence upon your parents?
Do you need the affirmation of your mother or father, for example, to feel good about yourself? Of course, we would all like full approval from our parents, but the peaceful, mature Christian has been freed from the need to seek this kind of emotional support. We know that it’s God’s approval we need: “But as we have been approved by God to be entrusted with the gospel, even so we speak, not as pleasing men, but God who tests our hearts.” (I Thessalonians 2:4)
How about guidance? Our parents have lived longer than we have, and many of them—especially believing parents—have a wealth of wisdom to share. But God has also supplied His word, pastors, counselors, godly friends, and of course, the Holy Spirit, who has been sent to guide us into all truth (John 16:13). If the word of the parent ends up having the same weight as the word of God, then we haven’t been weaned.
Are you financially independent from your parents? If you’re 22 and there is still a connection, you’re probably somewhere between dependence and financial independence. This is normal, and it’s healthy if your goal is complete financial independence. If you’re 40 and still leaning on mom and dad financially, you haven’t been fully weaned. If that sounds awkward, it should.
How often do you speak to your parents? Scripture tells us to honor them, and that includes how we communicate with them, and how often. It may be that there is too much communication for the wrong reasons. If they live next door or are in your life to a great extent, that’s one thing. But if you can’t go a couple of days without communicating with them because there is an emotional need that you have, then there is a weaning that needs to be done.
Parents can be the best and the worst aspects of growing up, and good or bad, we have to find the “right place” for them in our lives. See tomorrow for Part 2, but for now, do you think you’re completely weaned from your parents?
Prayer: Lord, help me to be completely free from dependence on my parents. Show me where I might still be leaning on them in the wrong way. I bless You that You call me to honor them. Help me to do that in every aspect of my relationship with them.