And you must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your strength. And you must commit yourselves wholeheartedly to these commands (the 10 commandments listed in chapter 5) that I am giving you today. Repeat them again and again to your children. Talk about them when you are at home and when you are on the road, when you are going to bed and when you are getting up. Deut. 6:5-7 NLT
I’ve been discovering anew that it doesn’t take much effort for children to learn to sin but it takes tremendous effort to correct sinful behaviors. Recently, I picked our grandson up from day care. The teacher indicated that he had not had a good day. When I asked him what happened he immediately confessed his transgressions. And even at 2 and a half, he already has in innate sense of blame-shifting. That’s not something he’s been taught. When we ride through the city playing the ‘what do you see game’ we’ve already had to have conversations about not saying you’ve seen something if you haven’t.
Scripture teaches that we are born in sin. From the moment we arrive on this earth we are constantly battling the sinful nature. As parents and grandparents I believe we too readily and too easily excuse childish behavior as just that. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not suggesting that we start casting out demons every time our children make a mistake or do something wrong. What I am suggesting -actually what God commands – is that we recognize the slippery slope of sin and begin, from the time our children are born, teaching them God’s standards. From the beginning we need to help children see their behaviors in the light of the standards set by a loving God. Dennis Rainey teaches in One Home At A Time that we are either raising our children to be missionaries or a mission field. When we fail to teach them God’s standards, when we fail to impart a Godly vision for their behaviors, attitudes and their future, we send them UNPREPARED into a culture, into a world that TAKES NO PRISONERS. We are in a war and wartime requires aggressive defensive and offensive moves. Parenting ain’t for cowards! Time is out for passive parenting. Get in the game before it’s too late!
Let’s keep the dialogue going.