Walter A. Henrichsen writes, “Discipling must begin with our children if it is ever to affect the rest of our culture. Before we go looking for people to disciple, we should start with our own families. For a few short years, God has entrusted our children to our care. Whether for good or bad, we will mark them for eternity.”
The Bible directs us to: “Start children off on the way they should go, and even when they are old they will not turn from it” (Proverbs 22:6). Our primary goal is for our kids to love God – for them to learn to know Him, walk with Him and serve Him.
So, how do we begin discipling our children? Here are a few key principles that work!
Know God Intimately
God has given parents primary responsibility for the spiritual training of their children. But many parents don’t know where to begin. Proverbs 1:7 offers an insight: without knowledge and fear of the Lord, children cannot learn anything worthwhile. Education begins with the pursuit of God—who He is and what He is like.
Many children have only a vague understanding of God’s true nature. They have been exposed to ideas about God that may not match what the Bible says. Your kids can know God intimately. Introduce them to the Lord’s character and qualities. Explore each facet of His magnificent perfection!
Love God Passionately
Jesus summed up all 613 Old Testament laws into two: love God and love people (Mark 12:30-31). But beware of the simplicity of Jesus’ words. To love God with ALL the heart, soul, mind, and strength does not mean “business as usual.” Loving God demands effort, action, and passion.
Most children today love peer approval more than they love God. They are more concerned about “fitting in” than they care about being set apart for God’s special purpose. Your kids can love God passionately. Encourage them to enjoy His presence moment-by-moment throughout the day. Determine not to lose touch with God’s Spirit. Express adoration and delight in unbroken communion with Him!
Serve God Selflessly
Most kids serve themselves before they consider the needs of others. Selfishness is natural—part of being human. But God extends a higher calling to His followers. The Lord challenges Christians to demonstrate faithful conduct that honors God and helps people. This requires supernatural strength from the indwelling Christ (Galatians 2:20).
Lift your child’s eyes from his or her own interests to see the world from God’s point-of-view. Christ has promised to meet all our needs (Philippians 4:19). That is His job. Our job is to walk by faith, serving Him in all we do. Your kids can serve God selflessly. They will usually follow the example of their parents and influential teachers. When you model selflessness, your children will respond in kind!
Celebrate God’s Greatness Together
God is the focus of the entire universe. He enjoys being Lord of the heavens and the earth! God also deserves to occupy the central focus in the minds, hearts, and souls of every human being. Life begins and ends with Him. Determine to know God on a more intimate basis each year. The better you know Him, the better you and your children will be prepared to face life’s challenges. Celebrate God’s greatness together!
Build To Last
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