Our Daily Bread, July 23
The 19th-century pastor Henry Ward Beecher told of a mother in the wild frontier country who was washing clothes beside a steam. Her only child was playing nearby. Suddenly she realized he was no longer near her. She called his name, but there was no answer. Alarmed, the mother ran to the house, but her son was not there. In wild distress, the frightened woman dashed out to the forest. There she found the child, but it was too late. The youngster had been killed by a wolf. Heartbroken, she picked up the lifeless body, drew it close to her heart, and tenderly carried it home. Beecher concluded, "Oh, how that mother hated wolves!" Understandably, she detested them because of what they had done to her beloved child.
Every Christian parent should feel that way about evil. Like a wild wolf, it can destroy children. Many mother s and fathers who are so careful to guard their youngsters from physical harm don't notice the sinful forces that threaten the spiritual welfare of their boys and girls. As a result, they leave them unprotected. They show little concern for the friends their children make, the magazines they read, or the TV programs they watch. But if any of these influences are evil, they should be viewed as a deadly threat. Like the psalmist, we must determine, "I will not know wickedness" (Psalm 101:4>). And we should protect our children from it.
The mother in Beecher's story had good reason to hate wolves. And, as parents, we should hate evil with that same passion. - R.W.D.