A foolish son is a grief to his father, and bitterness to her that bare him.
Every godly parent with children knows the truth of this statement. Fathers grieve when their children are foolish, and mothers feel the bitter pain of seeing them choose folly instead of wisdom. Of course, worldly parents are not as grieved or pained, because they do not understand wisdom or godliness, nor do they recognize their children are fools.
Mothers endure pain bringing their children into the world (Gen 3:16; John 16:21), and they work hard and long bringing those children to maturity (I Tim 5:8). But if they neglect training them in the way of the Lord, those children can bring far greater grief and bitterness in the future than childbirth or thankless years doing laundry (Pr 29:15)!
What should you learn? Child training, though requiring sacrifice and investment, has a fabulous return. It will save you from the grief and bitterness described here, and it will bring great joy and pleasure to see your children living in wisdom before God and men (Pr 10:1; 15:20; 17:21; 19:13,26; 23:15-16,24-25; 27:11; 29:3,17). You have been warned!
If you train up your children when they are young, they will give you pleasure when they are old, by walking in the ways you know are good (Pr 22:6). God has loaned them to you with foolishness bound in them, but He has told you how to drive it far away (Pr 19:18; 22:15; 23:13-14)! Fathers, training is not an option (Eph 6:4). And mothers, you must participate as well (Pr 1:8; 6:20). The choice is up to you, but the consequences are certain!
Parent, do you have a godly goal and approach to child training? Or is life just happening in your home? And your children are growing up without daily correction and instruction from you? The pastor cannot do it for you; and the public school system will certainly not. God chose to have wisdom communicated by parents to children (Deut 6:4-9; 29:29).
Children, obey your parents. When you disobey, you cause disappointment and pain. If you do not honor your parents, you will reap what you have sown - future pain from your own children (Gal 6:7). There is nothing weak about remembering how your mother will feel when she learns of your sins. Such thoughts have held some men back from crimes.
Reader, do you consider the grief you cause your heavenly Father by foolishness and carnality (Ps 95:10)? While the God of heaven is independent of actual harm by your sins (Job 35:5-8), His influence is grieved and quenched in your life (Eph 4:30; I Thess 5:19). You can please or displease your heavenly Father (II Sam 11:27; I Kgs 3:10). Feel the meaning of these words: "Be ye therefore followers of God, as dear children" (Eph 5:1).