James’ random thought for the day:
Not too long ago I listened to a 12 year old tell me they didn't have time to read the Bible! They had a Bible…a really nice one with added teen devotionals, a concordance, and even some Hebrew and Greek translation help on understanding the context. They were 12! TWELVE! Since when did 12 year olds NOT HAVE TIME!
Now I have an idea where this youngin’ got the notion that they didn't have time…they learned it from their parents. I hear the “I don’t have time” spiel all the…time! Before we go any further let me explain that I understand:
WORK, BILLS, APPOINTMENTS, MEETINGS, DEADLINES, MORE WORK, SCHOOL, MORE BILLS, MORE APPOINTMENTS, MORE MEETINGS, CHILDREN, CHILDREN & HOMEWORK, CHILDREN & (insert here the many activities they may be involved in after school), MORE WORK, COOKING, FOOD FOR SAID COOKING, UNEXPECTED EVENTS, UNEXPECTED THINGS BREAKING THAT NEED TO BE FIXED, STRESS, SLEEP or NO SLEEP, MORE COOKING, FOOD, SHOPPING, MORE WORK, MORE APPOINTMENTS, MORE MEETINGS, MORE WORK…RINSE, LATHER, & REPEAT!!!
Okay now that I have that out of the way, let me also address that I know that there is no such thing as a perfect parent nor is there such a thing as a perfect child. Now that all of that has been cleared up, what are you teaching your children?
Whether you like it or not, you are teaching them something. Kids pick up all of our habits, the good and the not so good. A twelve year old that has convinced themselves that they don’t have time was learned by listening and/or watching their parent or parents.
Here is the truth: It’s not the public school system’s responsibility to teach our children, it’s yours! It is not the responsibility of the minister (youth, senior, music or whatever minister) to teach your children, it’s yours! It's not the Church's rather yours! All the above help and yes they all do teach your children but it is ultimately your responsibility to lead, guide, and teach them. It’s not the TV, Movies, magazines, Twitter, Facebook, other people, and/or insert other here’s job…it is yours! They are your children! They are your responsibility! Children are a joy and a blessing! They are never a burden or a curse and if you tell them that, shame on you!
Back to my question: What are you teaching your children?
Listen to what God tells Moses and in turn he tells Israel: “Now this is the commandment, the statutes and the judgments which the Lord your God has commanded me to teach you, that you might do them in the land where you are going over to possess it, so that you and your son and your grandson might fear the Lord your God, to keep all His statutes and His commandments which I command you, all the days of your life, and that your days may be prolonged. O Israel, you should listen and be careful to do it, that it may be well with you and that you may multiply greatly, just as the Lord, the God of your fathers, has promised you, in a land flowing with milk and honey. “Hear, O Israel! The Lord is our God, the Lord is one! You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. These words, which I am commanding you today, shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your sons and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way and when you lie down and when you rise up. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand and they shall be as frontals on your forehead. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates” Deuteronomy 6:1-9! It didn't stop there! Keep reading when you have the…time!
Now specifically it was the father’s position to teach his children, his family to remember God and what He did for Israel. It was the father who taught his children to be obedient to God and His Word! It was the father who taught his children to walk in the ways of God, to live a righteous life! The father didn't merely teach it by what he said but how he lived! The dad took the role of being the priest of his home seriously! Men it is your job to take the role of a priest seriously in your home!
· Teach your children the love of God!
· Teach your children God’s statutes and principles!
· Teach them about Jesus!
· Teach them God’s Word!
· Teach them to pray! In fact pray with them, over them, and the like!
· Teach them obedience to God’s Word and righteousness living!
Moms you are not excluded! If there is no father! You teach them. The above list is not exhaustive! I bet if you took the time to study the culture when Moses spoke these words…you would find that their work load was way more than ours today! We truly do not have an excuse! We teach our children that they have no excuses when they get in trouble so why do we come up with them when we aren't teaching our children properly? What are we teaching our children?
· Our children need to be loved! We don’t accomplish that by telling them, but rather showing them! Love is accompanied by grace, mercy, and forgiveness! Do they receive that from you? Love is not an emotion of the moment! It continues despite their shortcomings that all humans, except for Jesus, have. They need to know that despite their shortcomings, the love you have for them only grows and never diminishes. Study 1 Corinthians 13…make the time!
· Our children need us to be active with them! Play with them, laugh with them, be a kid with them, and the like! I know you have to work…but your children need you to be active in their lives more than just financially. Turn the TV, cellphone, and computer off! They greatest joy you will have is right with your children! Do they know that?
· Our children need to hear us say the words, “I am sorry!” When you screw up, when you over react, when you break promises, when you falsely accuse, and you will…take responsibility for your actions and make the proper amends to your kids.
· Our children need us to be the role model, they need us to be their heroes! Allow God and His Word to influence you so you can be the proper example for your children! Our children need Biblical parents. That means moms and dads you need to be active in your growth in Christ! Here’s the deal…they see you at “church” and they also see you at home. Is there any contradictions?
If you aren't active in teaching your children then you are teaching them that they aren't worth your time! So you essentially are allowing...Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Blogs, the internet, their friends, other people, movies, the public school system, books, magazines, TV, politicians, neighbors, and the like to teach them. Look in the mirror, the problem is staring you in the face!
Moms and dads…when was the last time you sat around the table and prayed as a family? When was the last time you sat around the table and had a family devotion? When was the last time you taught your children about God and God’s ways?
You want to know the simple problem to all the trouble going on in our world, to all the trouble that we see in the families today! Are you sure you want to know the answer?
We have abandoned God and His ways, especially Jesus, not only in this country, in our schools, and in our government...but in our home! At some point we stopped teaching about loving God with all of our heart, soul, and strength! We stopped teaching and talking about God and His ways around the table, when we walk, when we lie down or wake up! We no longer put reminders up to remind us about God and what He has done and will continue to do for us! We abandoned God and His ways! God’s Word constantly tells us to not depart from His Word or His ways and that when we do, we will have trouble and sin in our lives! Problems, chaos, broken relationships, and the like!
You have the time so “Train up a child in the way he should go, even when he is old he will not depart from it.” Proverbs 22:6! The time you have with your children is short! What are you teaching them?
I've rambled and ranted enough! That’s my thought for the day!