Every month or so, I see an article making the rounds on social media like this one. The author invariably shares a touching story about how fast kids grow up and how sad it is that they are no longer as young or small as they once were. Almost every time I read an article like this, I find myself taking the exact opposite perspective.
Now, I’m not trying to condemn these types of articles nor the people that write or share them.
Everyone struggles with change. It’s part of the curse of sin.
Things change— people come and go. This is sad because it means that relationships will transition and eventually end. This is what’s truly at the heart of this type of emotional response to children growing older.
In spite of this, the true biblical perspective is that children growing up should be one of the most joyful experiences a parent can have!
Our mission while on earth is to make disciples. Thus, my greatest goal for my children is to see them grow into devoted disciples of Jesus. That can’t happen when they’re 2 or 3. They need to grow and understand who He is and what He’s done for them. They can’t grow in their comprehension of the Gospel until they begin having experiences where they see and appreciate grace and sacrifice.
In short, they can’t mature in their relationship with Jesus unless they are maturing as people.
And as they mature as people, they begin relating to my wife and I in more mature ways. I know that as they grow up, I’m gaining two new, deep friendships with people I love. Why would I be sad about this process?
There is certainly something special about having a small human being who relies on me and (as with my kids) are unbelievably cute. But I would much rather see my kids grow into some of my best friends. And that’s why I say I’m glad that they’re growing up. I certainly don’t want to miss the special moments while they’re young, but I look forward even more to the special times we’ll share as they grow.