What Does the Future Hold for Your Child?
ARE you a devoted and conscientious parent, deeply concerned with the future of your child? If so, you want him to receive a fine education, to make a success of himself, to build a happy family life and to gain security. Right?
But what are the prospects for such a future? Is not everything today uncertain? For one thing, do you have in mind a college education for your child? What are the prospects for a fine college education in an environment that is largely marked by sexual promiscuity and drug addiction? Add to that the fact that many school administrations do not really seem to care whether the students learn or not. The situation greatly concerns conscientious parents.
Look beyond school to a career. What does the world hold for your child? Does he want to be a lawyer? But how frustrating a career in law must be when many lawyers themselves admit that generally it is futile to expect justice to win out in the courtroom! Is your son preparing to be a doctor? Facts show that the more able a medical specialist he becomes, the more likely he is to be plagued with malpractice suits! Really, what future does any business career hold in view of the current economic situation? Everything in this old world is in upheaval. Is there any reason to expect the future to be any better?
There is no escaping it, the future that this world has to offer to your child is bleak indeed. But when you think of the future, do not leave God out of account. Yes, there is a God in heaven, the Supreme Being, for how else could this marvelous universe, including the earth and man, have come into existence? (Rom. 1:20) Without the shadow of a doubt, He is greatly interested in what goes on here upon this earth, even as an inventor is interested in the success of his invention and even as you as a parent are interested in the future of your child. What his purpose is regarding the earth and mankind he explains in his Word the Bible.
For one thing, the Bible tells us that God created the earth to be inhabited. (Isa. 45:18) Also, that it is his loving purpose that man should live forever in peace, righteousness and happiness. Thus the apostle John was given a preview of the time when God’s purpose for the earth will be fully realized. In vision John saw the time when God “will wipe out every tear from their eyes, and death will be no more, neither will mourning nor outcry nor pain be anymore. The former things have passed away.” (Rev. 21:4) Is that not something that you would want for your child?
But can we be sure that God will cause these conditions to come about? Yes, because, as his Word assures us, God “cannot lie.” (Titus 1:2) Moreover, it also states that God’s purposes will meet with sure success. As his works of creation testify, is he not omniscient, all-wise, as well as omnipotent, all-powerful? (Isa. 55:10, 11) So we can look forward with confidence to the day when these conditions will prevail upon the earth. ‘But when?’ you may ask. According to Bible prophecies, particularly the one given by Jesus Christ, the Son of God himself, the generation that has seen the troublesome conditions that have prevailed since 1914 will see this change come about. “This generation,” said Jesus, “will by no means pass away until all these things occur.”—Matt. 24:34.
Think what that will mean! All the distressing conditions that now afflict humankind—wars, famines, earthquakes, diseases, injustices, economic hardship and poverty—all will be done away with. That change, the Bible foretells, will come about by an act of God so catastrophic that Jesus likened it to the great deluge of Noah’s day. At Revelation 16:14, 16, the culmination of that great tribulation is described as “the war of the great day of God the Almighty,” at Har–Magedon.
For your child, as well as for yourself, to survive that catastrophe and to enter that righteous, peaceful and happy world, what must you do now? God’s prophet answers: “Seek Jehovah, all you meek ones of the earth . . . Seek righteousness, seek meekness. Probably you may be concealed in the day of Jehovah’s anger.”—Zeph. 2:3.
If you heed that command and teach your child to do the same, then both of you can hope to survive the day of God’s anger, to enter into that new system of things. Surely, no better future could you wish for your child than that!
But what if your child is too young to exercise faith when that time arrives? The Bible explains that God gives young children of believing parents the same consideration that he shows to such parents. (1 Cor. 7:14) So their prospect for survival depends on what their parents are doing to demonstrate faith in God. (Jas. 2:26) That is something to think about.
But never minimize the ability of young children to grasp principles of right and wrong, and to exercise faith in God and in his Word. Teach them. The publishers of this magazine often receive letters from children from six to eight years of age, expressing their appreciation for what they are learning about God and his Word. In this regard they might be likened to the early Christian minister Timothy who was taught about God’s Word from infancy onward. Yes, if, as the newspapers show, children of tender years are capable of imitating adults in committing all manner of crimes, then certainly children of tender years are also capable of imitating adults in following a course of rectitude.—2 Tim. 3:14.
But what about a youth whose parents ignore the command to ‘seek Jehovah, to seek righteousness and to seek meekness’? Can a mere youth do so on his own? Absolutely! In fact, many youths from ten to twelve years of age have taken their stand for God and for righteousness independently of their parents.
Clearly, this world has no bright future to offer to your child. However, God’s Word has, and not only to your child, but also to all, young and old, who will ‘seek Jehovah, righteousness and meekness.’ To heed those commands you must buy out time for yourselves so as to learn what God requires of you and then apply in your daily life what you learn. Today some two million Christian witnesses of Jehovah are helping others to do that very thing, and, at your request, the Witnesses living in your own community will be glad to render such assistance to you.