"Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it."
This verse from Proverbs 22:6, is the desire of most of the parents I have ever talked to. The question I am usually asked is, "How is it done?" How can we train our children to love God and live for Him?
The majority of Christian parents believe this verse means that we should lecture our children about Jesus and to send them to church and Sunday school. I have talked to literally hundreds of parents who have tried this and they don't understand why their children have no desire to live for Jesus. They are not alone.
The majority of children raised by Christian parents will not live for Jesus as adults. In fact, research has shown that as many as 70-75% of children raised by Christian parents will NOT live for Jesus as adults. How can this be? Either we don't have the Truth in Jesus or we are conveying this Truth improperly. I believe the latter is the case.
Deuteronomy 6:7 indicates how God would have us teach our children to love Him. The previous two verses are commands that we should love the Lord with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength and that the commandments of God should be in our heart. Then we are told to "Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up."
This verse teaches us to teach our children at four specific times: When we sit down as a family, when we are walking together, when we lie down, and when we rise up. Is that the case in your home? If you are like most Christians, you are doing just the opposite! Think about it.
When your family is sitting at home, what is usually taking place? You are probably watching television or eating, or both. That's right, when we are sitting at home the television is doing most of the teaching, not Mom and Dad. Research has shown that not only is it an effective teaching device, its teachings are usually against the commands of God.
How about when we "walk along the road?" In today's society, we usually don't use walking as a means of family transportation. We drive our car. What is happening when our family is in the car? Besides fighting, we are listening to music on the car stereo. And what is the teaching that is taking place? For the most part, the music of today is teaching a philosophy that is against biblical values. Another missed opportunity!
How about "when you lie down and when you get up?" In other words when you go to bed at night and get up in the morning. The majority of us are watching the news, Leno, or Letterman. And when we get up in the morning it's usually the local rock radio station.
Think about it. Even if the television and radio programs weren't spewing out philosophies that are against biblical values, God says these are prime times for teaching our children to love him. When you are eating, driving, going to bed, and waking up, are you using that time to impress the values of God on your children or are you allowing the enemy to impress his values?
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