Be on Your Guard: Parenting in a Changing Culture

Some months ago in an upset election result, an underdog candidate beat an incumbent governor. Months of sheltering in place while COVID ravaged the world spotlighted what became the crucial issue in that vote. Parents, obliged to become their children’s schoolteachers awakened to some alarming realities. And like a sleeping giant, it aroused an awareness of what had been brewing undetected. 


“Remain here and watch,” Jesus told his disciples in the Garden of Gethsemane (Mark 14:34, ESV). But while Jesus wrestled in prayer and anguished in His spirit, the disciples couldn’t keep their eyes open. 

Again, Jesus implored, “Watch and pray that you may not enter into temptation” (Mark 14:38 ESV).

In the long process of bringing up children it is easy to be lulled into a thick heavy stupor like the disciples on that important night. 

“I’m too tired.”

“It can’t be that important.” 

 “I’ll deal with it tomorrow.” 

 It is comfortable not to be bothered, to remain unaware and undisturbed. In the interlude of nodding off, however, supposedly safe places where our children absorb and learn are inundated with ideas contrary to truth. 

Recently I sat with one of my grandchildren and watched while he played what should have been a harmless video game. Only it wasn’t, and the ungodly teaching opposed both his parent’s and grandparent’s convictions. 

With our busy lives, how is it even possible to screen everything, to decipher intent, or discern underlying agendas? How can we remain alert? 

How is it even possible to screen everything, to decipher intent, or discern underlying agendas? How can we remain alert? @SylSchroeder #Parents #Parenthood

Jesus, before His crucifixion, told his sleepy disciples three things: Stay Awake. Watch. Pray. 

In Jesus’ life on earth, He’d poured into the twelve, and their lives were about to upturn like tumbleweeds. Deep trials only Jesus foreknew were about to take place and they needed supernatural strength to stand against temptation. Peter’s denial would come.They would all abandon Him.

“Stay awake, watch and pray,” He urged with passion. 


We as parents and grandparents see the off-kilter flight of moral stability in our world. Our eyes may have drooped with indifference and weariness. A following generation will pay for those moments of sluggish non-awareness.

We are in a battle against disengagement’s thick wool of sleep. We must remain alert. We cannot underestimate as naïve children, the magnitude of the moment. 

What can we do to stay awake? 

Be a student of the Word. We cannot possibly be lookouts for our children if we do not know what God has first taught us. The Bible alerts us, it awakens.  

For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.

Hebrews 4:12 ESV

Know the culture. Normalizing sin within society brings lethargy. Be an active watcher and listener. Know what is happening and how it is disguised. Every spiritual fiber in us must wake up for the sake of the little ones coming behind us. 

Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.  

1 Peter 5:8 ESV

Be on your guard. Parental malaise can happen without even realizing it. Tired and overworked, we ask, “Does it really matter?” 

“If I ignore it maybe they will stop doing it.” 

“Will it be worth the flack?” 

Paul the Apostle, living in a society which in many ways resembled ours today, exhorted the church in Corinth: 

Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be courageous; be strong.

1 Corinthians 16:13 NIV

Bring your concerns to Jesus. Pray about everything. Pray with humility and pray with faith

And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people. 

Ephesians 6:18 NIV

Jesus knew before it happened what testing awaited His disciples. He knew then, He knows now. This moment is not hidden to Him nor is the future. So, as we see the chaos around, let’s heed His words to the disciples in the garden: Stay awake, watch, and pray. Let’s bow before a Sovereign Father with our requests, then rest in knowing He cares much more than we ever could.

Stay awake, watch, and pray. Let’s bow before a Sovereign Father with our requests, then rest in knowing He cares much more than we ever could. @SylSchroeder #Prayer #Parenthood


7 thoughts on “Be on Your Guard: Parenting in a Changing Culture

  1. Amen Ms. Sylvia, While it seems next to impossible to monitor and filter what our children and grandchildren are exposed to, we do need to careful to watch what we can and be careful in selecting what and where they are exposed to things. Knowing how their friends are parenting (TV, language, permissiveness, etc.), monitoring what their schools are teaching (helping with their homework to understand what is being taught), and other interactions outside the home is every bit as important as what we allow inside our homes. The most difficult part for me was/is helping young people understand why they aren’t allowed to watch, play, or say certain things that go against the godly values we are trying to teach. Even more difficult is when we parents and grandparents don’t exhibit those same values in our lives. Sometimes, “because I said so” isn’t enough to counteract “but everyone else does it.” Great post ma’am. Thank you for speaking truth into the lives of many with “littles” in their lives. It’s not too late to make a positive change.

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  2. Sylvia, thank you for the biblical reminder to “stay awake, watch, and pray.” I’ve seen plenty of inappropriate content offered to children lately. Sometimes we complain about what is happening instead of watchfully praying. It’s imperative that we follow God’s instructions. Your post renewed my zeal.

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