Sunday, January 8, 2012

Let's Not Fail Our Children

I once heard a man, who looked around at the new generation that was emerging, utter these words: "We have failed them". He was referring to the "lawlessness" of his children's generation, their cavalier attitude toward God. They had become a generation that was turning their back on their parents' belief and the only trust they had was in themselves. It was a generation that was dropping the torch being handed to them for the sake of chasing after self-interests. We see from this that since then each generation is getting a bit worse than the one that came before it. Now, one of the greatest industries is that of entertainment and the thing that occupies a great portion of our days is entertainment.

It's not a difficult thing. God told us to teach our children all about him so they too would learn to put their trust in him. There is even a promises that states that if we teach our children the way of the Lord, as they grow they will not depart from it. The psalmist wrote:

He decreed statutes for Jacob 
   and established the law in Israel, 
which he commanded our forefathers 
   to teach their children, 
so the next generation would know them, 
   even the children yet to be born, 
   and they in turn would tell their children. (Psalm 78:5-6)

It's only natural and it only makes sense, giving a positive result:

Then they would put their trust in God 
   and would not forget his deeds 
   but would keep his commands. (Psalm 78:7)

This is what was commanded about the teaching of God and the law, so how much more important is it to teach about God's grace through Jesus Christ? The thing with parents is that they get to teach it in word and then to demonstrate it in deed. We can can teach the importance of love and trust but if we don't demonstrate it in our actions the lesson is not going to go very deep.

There are no greater teachers than parents. There are no more natural teachers than parents. If a parent can teach a child how to eat, walk, run, how to dress themselves, make their bed, brush their teeth, then surely to teach them about Jesus is an easy thing. We teach them to be polite and kind so why not teach them why we must be kind; that Jesus taught us to love? It should be an easy thing to teach our children the foundation for our own living, what motivates us to do what we do, and why it is so important to have Jesus as Lord and Saviour.

We may not be able to do much about the mistakes of previous generations but we certainly can stand in the responsibility we have been given to teach our children. It is great that the Church provides Sunday School and other youth training programs, but the greatest lessons still come from the parents and this is where the responsibility lay; on the parents. Let's not lose our children while trying to save the world. Let's start at home before we look to our neighbour. Let's not fail our children.

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