As a parent and grandparent, there is a special joy that comes from watching your family grow and mature. But amidst all the joys experienced with my grandchildren as they reach various milestones in life, there is a verse that comes to mind that reorients my joy and makes me long and pray for something much deeper for their lives as they grow up…
I have no greater joy than to hear that my children [grandchildren, students] are walking in the truth. (3 John 4)
“Catechizing” is almost exclusively used in reference to the tool by which Christians carefully teach and firmly ground people, including children, in the essential truths of the Christian faith. Thankfully, many churches and parents are diligently and earnestly pursuing this crucial task. But others are a bit more relaxed about it, not seeing an urgency or, perhaps, believing that children and youth should not be weighed down by too much formal instruction and doctrine.
As a teacher, I really appreciate when students come to Sunday school readily prepared in both body and soul. Many parents are already doing a great job in this regard. But it’s amazing how the little things that are overlooked can cause big disruptions in the classroom: a child who needs a bathroom break during the lesson; an overly tired 10-year-old; a fidgety six-year-old who’s had too much sugar; a child who is anxious because getting ready for church put the whole family on edge; etc. A little foresight and planning will go a long way toward serving your children’s overall experience in the classroom.
Times are changing at record speed. How are Christians to keep up and rightly respond? How do we adequately prepare our children and youth to stand firm and not be swayed by the deceptions of this present darkness? First and foremost, we must confidently and continuously ground them in the eternal and unchanging TRUTH of GOD’S WORD, which has absolute authority over EVERY aspect and sphere of life.
This past Sunday in our corporate worship service, I saw and heard some of the following…
How does a dad lead his family in discipleship?
In this interview, we ask Bill Farley about the need for family discipleship, for dads to take the lead as spiritual example and guide, and the challenges dads can expect to face and what to do about them.
The start of summer means that my grandchildren will be outdoors as much as possible, experiencing all sorts of delightful adventures in God’s creation: working in the garden, hiking in the woods, splashing the dogs with the hose, exploring rivers and lakes, watching birds at the feeder, collecting rocks and bugs…just to name a few things. But it’s crucial that we don’t miss the opportunity to point them God-ward in these adventures.
The other day my daughter-in-law sent me a video of my 3-year-old grandson holding a pack of Blessing Cards in one hand while placing his other hand gently on his baby brother’s head. “What are you doing?” his mommy asked. “I am blessing him.” And he proceeded to mumble some words of blessing over his brother. That video brought this grandma to tears – happy, hope-filled tears. This future father (Lord willing) who has already learned to model what he daily experiences from his own daddy… who experienced it from his daddy. A father’s spiritual legacy that, by God’s sovereign grace, is doing far more than we could ever imagine in the lives of the next generation and beyond!
As parents, we pass along many things to our children, both intentionally and unintentionally – physical traits, mannerisms, values, family traditions, hobbies, and more. But are you intentionally and whole-heartedly passing on to them what is MOST important?
What is greatness in God’s sight? Too often I wish for my children, (and even for myself), greatness that is praised in the world’s eyes: high grades, academic accolades, advanced degrees, leadership positions, world-shaping achievements, visible fame, etc. This has been a temptation in every age.