I’m an old-fashioned “paper map” person. That’s probably because I like to have at my disposal the “big picture” of where I am and where I’m going—and not simply rely on an app to give me step-by-step voice commands.
In a sense, a curricula scope and sequence serves to give ministry leaders and volunteers the “big picture.”
In Deuteronomy 6:6-7, Israel gathered to hear the word of the LORD spoken by Moses: “these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, 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.“
The responsibility to teach Israel’s children was given to all of Israel, not just to parents. As King David put it several decades later, “One generation shall commend [God’s] works to another and shall declare [His] mighty acts” (Psalm 145:4). Today, we are the people of God, in Christ, who have been entrusted with the privilege and responsibility to invest in the faith of the generations. Deuteronomy 6 gives us direction for how to fulfill this calling and responsibility:
Summer provides parents with a wonderful opportunity to explore great parenting resources. Equipping for Life—A Guide for New, Aspiring & Struggling Parents by Andreas and Margaret Köstenberger is one of those resources. The book is written around three basic themes: Parenting needs to be realistic, relational, and responsible. These themes are fleshed out from a Bible-based, God-centered, gospel-focused perspective, giving practical examples from everyday life to which parents can relate.
As parents, our greatest goal and joy for our children should be that they come to faith in Christ and live as His faithful disciples. Clearly presenting and explaining the essential truths of the gospel and demonstrating what it means to follow Jesus in daily life is our greatest duty and privilege as we teach and train our children. But trying to discern whether or not a child has truly understood and embraced the gospel and its call to daily discipleship is sometimes harder to assess. Furthermore, how do parents and the church discern whether or not a young person is ready for the ordinance of baptism?
From the very beginning of Truth78’s ministry, we have been challenged, guided, inspired, and sustained by these words from Paul to Timothy:
You, however, have followed my teaching, my conduct, my aim in life, my faith, my patience, my love, my steadfastness, my persecutions and sufferings that happened to me at Antioch, at Iconium, and at Lystra—which persecutions I endured; yet from them all the Lord rescued me. Indeed, all who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted, while evil people and impostors will go on from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived. But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have firmly believed, knowing from whom you learned it and how from childhood you have been acquainted with the sacred writings, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work. (2 Timothy 3:10-17)
My children have many wonderful and notable memories with their dad. My husband was actively involved in their lives in so many different ways. But one particular memory stands out as unique and life-giving to both dad and children—the nightly blessing and prayer time. Every night, my husband said a blessing over our children and prayed with and for them. By the time our children reached adulthood, they had received more than 5,000 blessings from their father.
What kind of pray-ers will our children be? That is a great question to think about. If we want them to be serious about prayer, they must not only be taught but also shown how prayer is to be woven throughout everyday life. Here are some practical tips from Sally Michael to encourage your children in prayer.
When I was a child, and even into my teens, I spent most of my free time outdoors. Whether playing active games with friends, exploring the neighborhood woods, or simply lying in the grass trying to identify different shapes or figures in the clouds, we spent much of our summer disconnected from media or other electronics. Now that I am an adult, I have found I still benefit from enjoying the outdoors, as it evokes praise and admiration of God as I experience firsthand the wonders He has created. One way we can encourage our children to meditate on and give God praise for His wondrous works is to go on a "Praise Walk." How? First, read together Psalm 148. Help your children to identify all of the created things in the verse that are to give praise to God.