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Parenting 101 – Part 2


Last month I wrote about what I believe the expectations of us as parents are Biblically speaking.  I also wrote of what I think God’s expectations are of our kids.  This month…I’d like to break it down just a little bit more.

The first text I wish to focus on comes from the book of Deuteronomy.  The majority of this book is the last big sermon that Moses gives to the Israelites before he goes to be with the Lord.  They are about to enter the Promised Land across the Jordan River.  He will not be going with them as their leader because of a sin.  The one he’s been mentoring, Joshua, will lead the nation.  Moses however, gives one long last word of instruction from his heart.

Throughout his time leading the family of God, he’s seen them remember God and His ways and then forget God and His ways.  He saw how this cycle was defeating to God’s family.  As a parent would remind a child, he reminds Israel of some simple principles for life.

In Deuteronomy 6, Moses writes what he told Israel to do in order to always have a good relationship with their Creator.  Remember, Moses is the one God handpicked to lead His family.  Moses’ words are probably good to follow.  He says in verse 6 that God’s commands are to be on our hearts and that we, as parents, are to impress them on our children.

God wants to be with us forever…face to face…and it doesn’t have to start in Heaven.  It can happen even now.  God has given us prayer, Jesus who forgives us, the Spirit who lives with us and the Hope that we will be in Heaven one day.  What’s the point of Him giving us all these things now?  He wants to be with us…you and me and our kids.  Eternity starts when we make a decision to follow Him by believing in Jesus.  But sometimes we forget this.  We get tied to our jobs.  We get tied to our calendar.  We get tied down to our finances.  We get tied to our ‘to-do’ list.  We get tied to our dreams.  And when we get tied too tight to those things, we forget about Jesus.

Moses saw this first hand many times.  He stood between the nation and God and prayed He would not obliterate them on the spot.  God saw that His people had forgotten and thrown Him away.  He saw how He was rarely on their ‘to-do’ list or on their calendar or in their dreams.

Moses says this in Deuteronomy 6:7-9, “Impress them (God’s ways) 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.  Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads.  Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates.”  Basically, remember God wherever you are and whatever you’re doing!  Never forget.

So how do we as parents never forget and then teach our kids to never forget their God?  First, we need to be grounded so deeply that we consider God walking with us every second of every day.  Psalms 1:1 says that the person who meditates on and with God each day is like a tree, planted by streams, who is fruitful and healthy and prosperous.  The New Testament gives us the image of Jesus going regularly to spend time with His Father.  Are we doing our darned best to know God?

If we know God, if we truly know God, I think it’s easier to talk about and represent God whatever we’re doing wherever we going and to whoever is around.  Our kids will see that and learn simply by watching.  But beyond that, we’re to teach them to do the same.  In the end, success as a parent is getting our kids to Heaven and teaching them to bring their family and their friends with them.

Love, Serve, Spread the Word,

ed

PS—Just asked my 12 year old son Micah to read Deuteronomy 6:4-9 to let me know his impressions.  His response went something like this, “Moses said to remember God all the time and to tell your kids to remember God all the time.”  He also wondered what it would look like to write verses all over your arms!

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  1. March 20, 2012 at 3:19 pm

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