A few weeks ago, Ellie asked some questions about how she could know God more and it led to a conversation about reading the Bible and hiding God’s Word in our hearts. I’ll admit that I haven’t done the best job at helping my children grow in their faith. I’ve become even more aware of the fact that it’s my responsibility as a parent to pass along my faith to my children during this pandemic when church has been closed, VBS has been cancelled and our normal faith-based activities have come to a screeching halt.
Pastor Chuck Swindoll recently preached a sermon on the book of Lamentations and his concluding statement has caused me to reflect on how I’m raising my family and making the most of these days when we’ve been quarantined with each other with no end in sight.
Don’t let anyone ever tell you that it’s too late, that we are finished, or that this country is done. We are not. There are too many great families; raising them right; you’re thinking straight. You know better than what you are being told in the media. You realize God’s plan is an overshadowing, all-consuming plan spelled out in the Scriptures and nothing will ever nullify it. And the one place you have to make that clear and known and to drive it home is in your family. If you’re not seeing it there, you’re missing it because that’s where the children will learn it and it’s from there that they’ll take it with them.
These are dark, difficult days right now, but this isn’t the end, this isn’t even the beginning of the end. But it is as Churchill said on one occasion, “may be the end of the beginning.” And as we start over in a whole new way, make sure your family’s on target. Stir up the relationship within them. Spend time with one another. Build into the lives of each other. Pray with each other. Sing with each other. Stand alongside each other. Be there for them when they graduate. Encourage them along the way.
During this unique moment in time, I’m trying to be more intentional about guiding my children in their walk with the Lord. I can think of no higher calling than passing along my faith to my children and taking the time to teach them the values that I hold most dear.
Proverbs 1:8-9 explains it this way, “Listen, my son, to your father’s instruction and do not forsake your mother’s teaching. They are a garland to grace your head and a chain to adorn your neck.” It’s my prayer that as a mother the things I try to instill in my children will be a graceful garland around their heads. That they wouldn’t “forsake” or forget my teaching, but it would guide and lead them as they grow into adulthood.
I’ve created a new section on my blog entitled “Gracefully Garland”. I hope that it will be a source of inspiration, encouragement and hope for others who want to serve their families well by passing along their faith and wisdom to their children. By no means have I got this all figured out, but I’d like to invite you on my journey as I discover things to help me as a parent who’s just trying to navigate the complexities of raising her children in God-honoring way.