July 20, 2022
I have been doing some research on our newest generation of parents and was a little shocked at some of the challenges that are faced in raising children today. Before I get too deep, let me just say that after being a parent for 28 years, I will tell you I am not perfect. I have messed up more times than I can count. Even with all of those mess ups, my children and I have great relationships and we love each other very much. Even though I am not perfect, the Lord is, and He has done a great job with my children. Today though, parents are not able to just be parents. The number of rules, regulations and social media helps are sometimes, I think, too much to bear. Young parents today are tasked with being “perfect parents” and let me tell you that is impossible.
With all of that in mind, I decided to put the three most important things down for a young parent to do, and it all stems from the Bible. So, if you don’t mind, I will share that here. This will all come from a simple passage called the Shema in Deuteronomy 6 Verses 4-9 which reads. Hear, O Israel: The Lord is our God, the Lord alone. You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your might. Keep these words that I am commanding you today in your heart. Recite them to your children and talk about them when you are at home and when you are away, when you lie down and when you rise. Bind them as a sign on your hand, fix them as an emblem on your forehead, and write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.
- First, Love the Lord your God with all your Heart and soul, and mind. Make God your priority. My children always knew that I was going to serve the Lord and that I was going to follow Him. They knew we would go to church, they knew that even in our imperfections we believed that our job was to first and foremost, “Love God” As parents, the most important thing we can do is make sure our relationship with Christ is right and good.
- Second, talk to your children about the Lord, about Jesus. Make sure they understand that everything they do can relate to Christ. Our family has never done a Bible Study, but we have always made the Bible alive in our home. If we were correcting, we would use verses to help in that correction. We would talk about His word at home and while on the road. Listen to music that is uplifting and points to Christ in your car.
- Third, When your children wake up, express your love to them the same way Jesus expresses his love to you. Pray with your children in the morning as they are leaving the house. Pray with them as they are going to bed. Make sure they understand that your love for the Lord will overflow to them and that you are expressing that love by caring for them even while they sleep.
- Finally, make sure you have His word on your walls. Get art that shows His word. What are your favorite verses? Make sure they are seen by your children. Make sure they see you reading the Bible, and expressing love for it and for Him.
Parenting can be challenging enough without having to be perfect. What I love is that God never calls for perfection, He calls for our love. Your children could not ask for better parenting when it is done with the Lord. Unless the Lord is in your parenting, the challenge will be great.