Psalm 127 is attributed to Solomon. Known for his wisdom, this worship song is his reminder of the need for God to be central in every home. It’s a reminder to all parents that children are indeed a gift hand-wrapped by God.
Unless the LORD builds a house, its builders labor over it in vain; unless the LORD watches over a city, the watchman stays alert in vain. In vain you get up early and stay up late, working hard to have enough food – yes, He gives sleep to the one He loves. –Psalm 127:1-2
Have you ever thought about if God was to build a home spiritually, what would the design be like? What would He ensure was in that home?
The word “vain” means “empty” or “worthless.” So many parents can be found building their homes in a worthless way. Instead of building for the things that count, they waste the opportunity on worthless pursuits like these.
Verse 2 describes many homes today. Getting up early and staying up late just trying to keep up with the pressures on each family.
The problem is that God’s expectations for your home and the world’s expectations differ significantly!
Verse 2 says that God “gives sleep” indicating that families can experience true rest through Him. Unfortunately, most families are running ragged due to trying to keep up with the world’s expectations.
This passage warns parents concerning chasing after the wrong prizes. This clarion call reminds parents to avoid leading your family in such a way that you are running them ragged. In our culture, parents can easily become obsessed with relentlessly pursuing worthless things.
This passage is a call for dependence upon God and a commitment towards one’s family.
It is not an excuse for laziness. Scripture is clear concerning the value of hard work (Prov. 6:6-11; 10:26; 13:4; 15:19; 19:24; 22:13; 24:30; 26:13-16).
This verse is warning the reader never to let work interfere with one’s relationship with God and his or her family. With seemingly good intentions, many parents believe that the best way to show their children love is through provision. Other parents believe the most loving thing to do is to help equip their children for success in the desired path of life.
While these may be good pursuits, they are not the best pursuit. For all the passion to see one’s child succeed, these pursuits can leave children unsatisfied and restless.
There is another way. It’s allowing God to provide the framework for your family instead of the world. It is allowing His Word to determine how you live and not the neighbors down the street. It’s not leading your family to a lifestyle of running ragged and missing out on keeping Christ the center of your home.
For all the time and resources spent trying to build a home, don’t build it in an useless manner.
Travis Agnew serves as the Lead Pastor of Rocky Creek Church in Greenville, SC. His most recent book is Just (About) Married.