Concerned and broken parents are some of the most tired people I know. Sunday’s sermon on Psalm 3 will consider how God sustains his people even when they are brokenhearted for their children and full of regret over their own mistakes that may have contributed to their children’s situation. Join us Sunday at either 9 or 10:30 at the Red Brick Church. You can now listen to the sermon here.
It is difficult to imagine a more heart wrenching context than that of Psalm 3. The heading reads, “A Psalm of David, When He Fled From Absalom.” Which is to say, that David’s son was trying to kill him and Psalm 3 is David’s inspired reflection on that terrible time.
The sequence of events that led up to Absalom’s attempt at a coup is full of sin and pain. The account can be picked up at 2 Samuel 11.
- It includes David’s adultery and subsequent murder of Uriah (2 Sam 11).
- The death of David and Bathsheba’s baby.
- David’s son, Amnon’s rape of David’s daughter Tamar (2 Samuel 13).
- Absalom’s murder of Amnon (2 Sam 13:23-39).
- Absalom’s treachery (2 Sam 15).
- Absalom’s defeat and death (2 Sam 18).
- David’s unspeakable grief (2 Sam 18:33).
So Absalom’s rebellion followed David’s own horrific sin and culminated in Absalom’s execution.
Thankfully, I have never been the pastor for someone in a situation as devastating as King David’s. Yet, I have talked with so many parents who are leveled by their children’s rebellion. I published a post in 2008, “How Should Parents Unpack Forgiveness With Rebellious Adult Children?” As of today, it has 287 comments. The comments for that post are a catalog of pain.
Given the pain of hurting parents, I am deeply thankful for the presence of Psalm 3 in the Bible. If you are a hurting parents, I would strongly encourage you to:
- Fast and pray. We talk about prayer much more than we actually pray.
- Know that as a hurting parent you are not alone. Many, many other parents are hurting.
- Watch the video in this post: For Parents of Rebellious Children
- Read this post: How Should Parents Unpack Forgiveness With Rebellious Adult Children?
- Consider reading the book, Come Back, Barbara
- Consider reading my book, Bound Together: How We Are Tied to Others in Good and Bad Choices, with a special emphasis on chapter 8, “A Red Rope for Hurting Families.”
- Read John Piper’s post, 12 Ways to Love Your Wayward Child.
But also meditate on Psalm 3! How was it that David was able to keep his sanity amid such a mess? Sunday I plan to preach on Psalm 3 on Sunday (6/12/16). The audio should be posted soon on our church web site.
Be assured, even for devastated parents, God’s word revives the soul (Psalm 19:7).