Psalm 127:3-5 is oft-quoted when talking about children.
Behold, children are a gift of 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.
How blessed is the man whose quiver is full of them;
But the last half of verse five is rarely quoted or explained.
They will not be ashamed
When they speak with their enemies in the gate.
The Bible makes it clear that children are a blessing from the Lord. They are not automatic blessings, however. There are warnings about foolish sons that bring grief and bitterness.
And the end of Psalm 127 tells us what that blessing should look like. It tells us what to strive for.
A man is not blessed because of the pitter-patter of little feet. While tiny, ticklish ribs and adorable laughter are certainly a blessing, they are not the blessing this psalm is talking about.
A man is blessed because his sons stand with him in the gates.
The gates of a city were where accusations were brought and judgments rendered. It was where the important men of the city gathered to decide important political matters.
And here we see father and sons standing together, in the gate, and not being ashamed. His sons help defend his good name.
These are full-grown sons, after decades of investment and faith.
The real blessing of children is when they are grown and they fight for your interests. Side by side. Shoulder to shoulder.
For a modern-day example, look at how Donald Trump, Jr. defends his father from attacks? No matter what you may think of Donald Trump, he has sons who are willing to stand with him in the gates, and he is truly blessed for it.
If your father is still alive, you should be prepared to do the same. Be a loyal son and give your own sons a good example. Show them how to be an arrow that flies true. Be prepared to defend your father in the gates against his enemies.
Because a worthy man who has stood for something at least once in his life will have some enemies.