“Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, the fruit of the womb is a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior, so are the children of one’s youth. Happy is the man who has his quiver full of them; they shall not be ashamed but shall speak with their enemies in the gate” (Psalm 127:3-5). The psalmist’s simple simile in verse 4—”Like arrows in the hand of a warrior, so are the children of one’s youth”—provides much food for thought.
Like arrows, children are a one-shot deal. As David so poignantly proved, there are no Mulligans (“do-overs”) in parenting. What a sad epitaph it is when it can honestly be said, “It would have been good for that man if he had not been born.” Such a sad sentiment is true of every eternally cursed inhabitant of hell. The Scriptures clearly teach that “the soul who sins shall die. The son shall not bear the guilt of the father, nor the father bear the guilt of the son. The righteousness of the righteous shall be upon himself, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon himself” (Ezekiel 18:20). Therefore, each person reaches an age in which he is accountable to God for the choices he makes. In the vast majority of cases, when that age arrives the child usually continues toward the target his parents have pointed him. Archers and bows, at what bull’s eye are you aiming your children? Each arrow in your quiver has only one shot at going to heaven. May God abundantly bless all parents as we proceed through the stages of: “Ready. Aim. Fire.”