To raise means to nurture, groom, culture, and train with specific expectations in mind; it means to have milestones which are expected and pursued.
A child is an offspring, which is usually biological, but could be adopted. Just like Steve Jobs adopted by Clara and her husband such that even when his biological father emerged, he refused to communicate with him. Being a child is not age-related in the emotional and relationship sense because as long as the parents are alive, the offspring is still a child. However, children are usually those below a legal voting age, which varies from between 16–18 years of age.
Fulfillment is a feeling of contentment and satisfaction based on the attainment of expected results or objectives in life. It is the emotional state devoid of inferiority complex, and confident that you are on course to attaining the purpose of your creation irrespective of what has happened or can happen.
Outside the pursuit of the design that determines our designation, life could become very comparative and competitive. Fulfillment could become an illusion just as people like Mike Tyson, Whitney Houston, and Michael Jackson found out, if it all boils down to the pursuit of fame, popularity, wealth, and power.
Fulfillment is only found after self-discovery and the discovery of purpose, and its pursuit is to such an extent that we have a balanced self-value, self-concept, and self esteem.
The key scripture which will determine fulfillment in life is Ephesians 2:10 – The discovery of the good works for which you were designed in Christ Jesus.
When life becomes a hedonic treadmill, you will never be satisfied and fulfilled because you will always see someone or something that you are not, or do not have, that will create a hole that the crab of discontentment can turn to a tunnel of emptiness.
The reason we were born or children are born is not to have someone to inherit one’s property. It is to produce a better you to establish the Kingdom of God; better put, a greater performer and revealer of the glory of God to humanity. ‘Greater Works’ does not necessarily mean greater anointing or something unprecedented, but just a greater dimension.
Joseph’s anointing did not increase; it was the people, placements, and platforms that he had that increased his performance. So for a child to have greater works as part of his/her testimony, he/she needs people who are elevators for the anointing present in such a child. He/she needs proper placement for his/her network and a platform high enough for advertorial enlargement. It is true that your network is your net worth.
In a bid to over spiritualize this topic, you will hear about being prayerful, studying the Word of God, and about the Holy Spirit endowment. There are very many prayer warriors who are a disgrace to the faith. Sometimes, the more prayerful they are, the more stupid they become. There are very many “mobile bibles” that are wretched and a shame to the Body of Christ. Likewise, there are very many tongue-talking, chair-breaking, and quaking brethren who are a burden to their families.
There are specific issues we will look at in addition to prayers, studying the Word of God, and being filled with the Holy Spirit that will make the raising of a fulfilled child possible.
Gene Pool Selection
Chickens cannot produce eagles; dogs don’t change to lions. You cannot give what you don’t have. The recent trend in the church for genetic counseling to be done before marriage is borne out of the knowledge that there are problems that follow the bloodline which include albinism, sickle cell anemia, insanity, schizophrenia, achondroplasia, diabetes, hemophilia, etc.
When there is a very high chance that offspring from a relationship are likely to have a predisposition to some medical conditions that will make life difficult, there should be a red flag raised before marriage. Love for one another should not bring suffering upon an innocent child.
It is true that God intervened in my case of being AS genotype with my wife and we have no sicklers, but this is a very special divine intervention. Life should be lived more on principles instead of the miraculous alone. I will not allow my children to attempt it, AS marrying AS.
Ngozi Okonji Iweala, the World Bank Executive, who once contested for the leadership of the World Bank and was the Minister for Finance, has both parents of hers as professionals of Economics.
There are specific genetic traits that God was looking for in the establishment of the nation of Israel. From Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, to Joseph, besides the anointing of God upon them, there was the expression of productivity in all of them. From Sarah, Ruth, Tamar, and Rahab, to Mary, there was the seed of strength of character and desire for relevance in each of them. Why God hated Esau was his reckless disposition. He would not have been able to contend with the challenges of the hostility of the bad neighbourhood of the Middle East.
Proper Parental Environment
John Crabbe, a behaviour geneticist at the Oregon Health and Science University, has shown from studies that genes alone cannot determine the outcome of our lives, but that our social environment can and does affect our genes.
Raising a secure child or an emphatic one in this view requires not just a necessary set of genes but also sufficient parenting or other apt social experiences. The effect of parenting on gene expression is what Daniel Golman would call ‘social epigenetics’. According to Golman, a child’s brain comes pre-programmed to grow, but it takes a bit more than the first 20 years to completely mature. So over this period, all the major figures in a child’s life like parents, siblings, grandparents, teachers, and friends can affect a child’s life.
The most important effects of the social environment takes place during the first two years of life. This is the most rapid period of growth of the brain from 400 grams to 1000 grams (an average adult brain is about 1400 grams).
R. J. Cadoret in 1995 did an experiment on how family environment affects aggression. Children born into families with aggressive and belligerent violence were adopted by peaceable families. Just 13% of the children displayed anti-social traits as they grew up. When such children were adopted into ‘bad homes’—families where aggression had freeway—45% went on to become violent. Even children exposed to violent music and irritable sounds while in the womb are more prone to being restless when born. Family life alters a lot of genes for several traits.
Michael Meaney, a neuroscientist at McGill University in Montreal, Canada, found out that how much a mother rat licks and grooms her pups during the first 12 hours of life determines how much brain chemicals the rat will secret in response to stress for the rest of its life. The more the nurturing, the smarter, confident, and fearless the pup became. With less nurturing, it is the slower to learn, and the pup will be more overwhelmed by threats. Just from the mother’s level of licking and grooming, one can determine how much the pup in turn will lick and groom her pup one day.
Meaney was led to suggest that small acts like caring acts by parents can have lasting effects upon children. Children from families where parents are calm, caring, and lovely tend to have similar marriages.
According to Sigmund Freud, the personality of an adult is 75% formed within the first five years.
A research was done amongst children in nursery school who were four years old in America. They were given snacks and told that if they did not eat it, another one would be given to them when the teacher returned. Some ate theirs; others did not. Those who did not eat theirs were rewarded with another snack. They were followed up till the age of 40 years. Those who did not eat theirs were richer, with more stable marriages, and in better health.
Carlos Slim’s father taught him to write down the way he spent his pocket money while still a child. That, in addition to other regulatory training, helped him to become the richest man in the world at some point.
The people in a child’s life have an opportunity to leave long lasting imprints that will help shape him throughout life.
- The training therefore starts before marriage—Jeremiah 1:5.
Many children in the bible that made a difference in their generations were spoken of before they were born—Isaac, Samson, Samuel, John the Baptist, Jesus etc.
A child born for greater works is a prophecy and a purpose conceived and clothed in human flesh. The prayers you pray before marriage will affect your offspring and your attitude towards them.
- Prophesy upon them when the womb. Speak to them. Be lovely to their mother.
- Create a conducive atmosphere in the uterus by not smoking, drinking alcohol, taking some drugs and eat properly. Resting properly also affects the child in the womb.
- Proper process of delivery by qualified personnel can affect the life of the child.
- Brain damage can occur from bad obstetric care.
- Damage to limbs can occur with rough handling.
God Bless You.