While listening to Family Talk Radio on the subject of parents’ influence on their children for godliness on a daily basis, I felt an urgency to write again on this subject. One mother was deeply convicted when her daughter asked, “Mom, every day you ask me if I’ve taken my daily vitamin. Why don’t you ask me if I’ve read the Bible today?”
I counsel and teach on a regular basis about having an intimate relationship with God that governs all we do or say. I recently taught on the subject, “Do you have a relationship with the church or a relationship with God?” Your children know if you are a person who engages God in your daily life or if you engage God only when you are at church.
As parents, do we have a passion for God at home and in life outside of the church walls? I did not know how blessed I was being raised in a PK home with parents that loved God, not just at church while ministering, but at home every day.
My mother was a prayer warrior. Many times I would come home from school as a girl and find my mother at the church altar praying. (We lived behind the church). My father was studying and reading the Bible consistently daily. He always had a Holy Ghost excitement about God’s Word. He was a self-taught Eschatology theologian long before Internet research availability. He studied, prayed and prepared for hours for every message that he preached or taught. He made God’s Word come alive.
My parents loved God. They loved each other and they loved us children. I saw and felt love, joy and peace in the home because my parents were longsuffering, patient, kind, good, faithful and had self-control. Were they living on a spiritual cloud nine? No! They loved the Lord more than their own selfishness and made daily choices to be Holy as He is Holy!
We have to choose to make godliness an intimate part of our lives. Do your children see you portray being ‘spiritual’ at church then come home to lies, bad attitudes, not praying, not reading the bible, etc.? Children recognize hypocrisy even before they are old enough to know exactly how to define it.
The great commandment tells us to love God with our whole heart, soul, mind and strength. How? It means we must allow God to control our thoughts, feelings and actions. We are to filter everything we are doing through God first. It is very simple. It takes godly discipline to lay down our selfishness and allow God to reign in our heart.
What we are in the home reveals our true character. How do we teach our children according to Duet. 6? When we get up, walk along the way, sit down and go to bed at night. Look for open doors throughout the day to invite God in to family life and activities. Ask questions, “What is God’s truth about that? How would God want us to handle this?”
Make a habit to share a scripture at dinnertime and discuss the truth while eating. How can we apply this truth to our life? Create a safe environment for your children for discussion of life issues. The question to ask yourself, “How much time does the family spend on media, Internet, etc.? Do we set aside time to spend with God?”
I know young families today are very busy. But we were busy when we were raising our children too. Many families have both parents working and the children are in school. There is homework, making dinner, doing laundry, trying to clean the house – all of these chores are necessary. In the middle of these activities, do we allow godly attitudes to govern our interaction with each other?
Dad and Mom, you are your children’s ‘first god with skin on.’ How your children view God will depend on how they view you. God is love. Study 1 Cor. 13th chapter that defines love. We must demonstrate how to live and move and have our being in God. The Holy Ghost in us will help us live the Fruit of the Spirit and love one another if we allow it. What our children see us do is the most powerful teacher.
As parents and grandparents, we should be able to say, “Follow me as I follow Christ.” (We give God the glory for our children that have chosen to love and serve God). When the family goes through a crisis, bring God’s truth into the situation. Pray together about needs. If a loved one dies, be prepared to talk about sickness and death. Explain the origin of sin from the Garden of Eden because of Adam and Eve choosing to disobey God. That choice brought sin, sickness, death, evil and every harmful thing we deal with today.
Share how God loved us so much that He came in flesh to die on a cross to pay the price for our sins. God gives us choice to love and serve Him or choose to serve the devil who is the god of this fallen world. There is a heaven and there is a hell. We all will die and live eternally. How we live our lives now determines whether we will live in heaven with God or be punished in hell forever and ever. It’s our choice. God’s puts no one in hell. We choose where we will spend eternity by how we live now!
God’s Word is a lamp to our feet and a light to our path. God’s Word hidden in our hearts will give us strength not to sin again Him. That is why we must do all we can to plant a love for God’s Word in the hearts of our children. If we love Him, we keep His commandments. Teach the reason for salvation. Teach Acts 2:38 and how we must be born again of water and Spirit – John 3.
We attend church less than 6 hours a week on average. We have 168 hours in every week to sleep, work, school, home activity, etc. If we subtract 6 hours a week being in church, we still have 162 hours to live our lives for His glory!! When your children follow you, do they know you are a follower of God? Jesus is coming soon! There is no prophecy unfulfilled to prevent the return of Jesus for His Bride. We see the signs everywhere telling us to look up for our redemption draws close. “Come quickly, Lord Jesus!”
© Carol Clemans – April 2015
Carol Clemans – Anointed Bible teacher, Certified Pastoral Counselor, Certified Christian Life Coach. Go to: www.carolclemans.org for bio, 145+ articles, teaching CD’s & DVD’s, book: GOD’S DESIGN FOR MARRIAGE. Call (636) 448-0121 to schedule speaking or for nationwide counseling by phone/Skype.