Samson was a miraculous gift as the couple was barren (Judges 13:2). Though, when you discover his strong-willed, self-centered, persistent, flippant personality, you have to reason that he was an incredibly difficult child to raise. Yet he was a gift.
Come to mind God's special gift, a child we weren't necessarily planning, yet God is a good Giver and blessed us. This pink package is our most strong-willed, persistent child. Yet she is a gift. I confess I do not always receive her as a sweet gift. Perhaps because she is a gift God uses to refine me.
At news of the child, Samson's parents were eager to raise the child in the way of the Lord. Manoah asks what is the child's manner life and what is his mission (Judges 13:12). No doubt these parents followed the messenger of the Lord's instructions. Prior to conception through marriage age, they obeyed the Lord by keeping Samson pure, set apart to the Lord's service. However, at some point in Samson's parents' life, they had to trust the Lord with His plan for Samson's life. Samson, determined to get the desirable Philistine woman at Timnah, was part of God's plan to gain leverage against the Philistines who were afflicting Israel (Judges 14:4). His parents knew Samson should take an Israelite woman as a wife, not a foreigner. What is a parent to do when their children make poor choices? Trust in the Lord. Do I trust my children to the Lord? Do I let them make mistakes, believing God will protect them and His will be done? Or do I parent out of fear…that the golden heads will fall into my bents toward sin, that they will make mistakes that are too big (this is unbiblical heresy)!
Samson's parents didn't see all Samson's battles. On his way to Timnah, Samson tears a lion apart using the gifting of the Spirit: superhero-like strength. Although, he breaks one of his Nazirite vows by touching a dead body, I wonder if this is symbolic of the battles children face while their parents aren't helicoptering. Still, God gave Samson his gift of strength. Interestingly, God revealed to Samson, not his parents, what his gifting was. So God will reveal to His children their gifting. And God will refine His children, it is the parent's job to be obedient to Him as Samson's parents were in keeping the Nazirite vow while raising him.
Samson didn't want his parents to know that he had broken the Nazirite vow and that honey had come from the dead lion carcass. Yet they tasted the sweetness. Could this be a type of reward for his parents? Will God allow me to taste the sweetness of obedience to Him in raising His child. The golden heads will at times choose disobedience (as do I), but when I am obedient, will I taste the sweetness of my child's giftings? Now and years from now, God will allow me to enjoy the sweetness of watching my golden heads do the good work He has prepared of them.
Even after the disaster of his first wedding celebration, his parents were there for him to return to (Judges 14:19). This is the last mention of Samson's parents. Will I repeatedly have open arms for my children to return to unashamedly, knowing they will be accepted and loved?
God has loved me with an everlasting love.
I have loved you with an everlasting love;He never comes to end with me. I confess that I do come to the end of it with my children, but through God's gift and power, I can love them as He loves me.
therefore I have continues my faithfulness to you. Jeremiah 31:3
In which way do you most relate to Samson's parents: receiving God's gifts, obedience, trust, tasting His sweetness or everlasting love and acceptance? First acknowledging His gifts, then we can begin to taste the honey of blessings. Praise God for His gifts, the power He gives to obey and trust His ways, His blessing and faithfulness.