Children in Our Care

I went out to have pie with a friend. We rarely get a chance to connect, and I think it was a couple years since our last visit. We had a great time, but we ventured into talking of one of her adult children.

Her oldest daughter is in extreme rebellion. She’s an adult and out of the home, so there isn’t turmoil going on in the household, but the pain of the separation lingers. The daughter is the oldest of several children. Life could be so joyful and rewarding for her, but she instead chooses a life of paper-thin friendships, parties, and vulgar sin.

I hope I encouraged her by helping her to ponder the here and now, the parenting within our influence. We have several children still within our care, and we can pour love on them. We want the children to know our homes as homes of love. They are appreciated and never taken for granted. There is Love in the House, and we want them to find comfort and joy, especially when they are grown and on their own.

Sometimes older children can be a heartbreak to the family, especially when we feel like the 18+ years of hard work was for nothing. My friend was experiencing this heartache firsthand. But there is encouragement in the trial. Once the adult child is on his or her own, the home settles down and the hard work of loving the other children starts up again.

Stay firm, learn from the mistakes you may have made with the older children, and pour this wisdom on the children that are in your care.

1. Love them, give many hugs a day and say “I love you.” Say this while looking into their eyes.

2. Accept them for who God has made them to be. They could be hurt over the older siblings and now is when they need you to just love them, to comfort them.

3. Let them know you are for them. Don’t cancel their activities because of the actions of the oldest. Keep to the schedule, a schedule that rewards a family that sticks together.

Still keep your adult children in prayer. God will take care of them. Trust that He will. And focus on the children He has entrusted to you now.

About Wendy Jeub

Yes, Wendy Jeub has brought 16 children into the world, and loves each and every one of them. So much so, she'd welcome more!

  • Peggy

    More words of encouragement: realize that more than likely it’s only a phase. I am only 23, but after I turned 21 I went through the partying stage where I was at the bar drinking 3 or 4 nights a week. It only lasted 8 months and then I moved on to bigger and better things. It may last a while, but eventually they should grow out of wanting to party all the time. They spent 18 years following your rules and guidance and now that they are on their own, they probably want a taste of what it’s like to follow their own rules. This too shall pass!

  • Lori Beth Artman-Starks

    Yes, I am now 31 and had a terrific upbringing and home life filled with lots of love and learning about Jesus. Yet at 18 all I wanted was to get out on my own and live however I pleased. No rules. Complete rebellion. I know that my parents and other siblings were worried and anxious about me and my life back then. But those lessons about Jesus and knowing the love He and my family had for me brought me around : )
    I did not get a real grip on reality and responsibility until around 25 : /
    So please tell your friend (or maybe she is reading here) to not lose hope. And just keep praying. Besides God does not want us to be anxious about anything, so leave it in His capable hands and just love on those children who are still in your care! That was some great advice, Wendy!

  • Klbuffalobrown

    Your friends story is very familiar to me, our oldest of 4 children seems to have forgotten family and the values we taught him and is much more interested in partying and living with his girlfriend. Its hard on the whole family. I did a study of a book called “Praying for your adult children” by Stormie Omartian. It really did help me remember how much even as adults our children need our prayers.

  • Momof6arrows

    How do you handle it when they still live at home? She is the oldest of 6, and we are seeing the effects on the other children. I know we don’t have her heart, and don’t want to make things worse between us. We’ve tried many things and nothing.