Today we had the joy of dedicating several babies and families at Sycamore Baptist Church, my family included. Here is what I shared with them regarding the “How To” of training your child in the Lord.
It Starts With You
Training our children to know and obey God is an extension of our relationship with, obedience to, and knowledge of God. If we aren’t following God or obeying God, we have no hope of teaching our children to follow and obey God, which means it starts with us.
There are a few things we must do:
(1) We have to have a relationship with the One True God
In Deuteronomy 6:4 Moses writes,
The Lord our God, the Lord is One.
Essentially, Moses tells us the God of Israel is the One True God. There are no other gods. Everything else out there is a counterfeit god.
Before we can train our children, we have to know the One true God ourselves. We have to have a relationship with the God of the Bible. That’s because training our children is an extension of our relationship with God.
(2) We have to serve God with our whole being
Moses tells us that in Deuteronomy 6:5. He writes,
You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might.
Moses means our entire lives, our whole being should be subject to God. We don’t hold anything back. God gets all of us. He directs everything we do. He directs the way we work. He directs our leisure activities. He determines our desires and what we want out of life. He determines everything we do, which means we must give Him more than just an hour on Sunday. We have to give Him our whole lives.
If we want to train our children, we have to be serving God with our whole being first. That’s because training our children is an extension of our obedience to God.
(3) We have to know God’s Word
If our whole life is to be directed by God’s Word, we have to know it. Moses makes that clear when he says,
And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart.
To say God’s Word must be on our heart, is just another way of saying it should be on our minds constantly, or at the forefront of our mind. That is only possible if we are reading, meditating on, memorizing, and prioritizing God’s Word in our lives.
If we want God’s word to inform everything we do, if we want to have a biblical worldview, then we have to know it. But more than that, it has to be the grid we run everything through.
So we learn that in order to live by and teach our children God’s commandments, we have to know them. That’s because training our children is an extension of our knowledge of God and His Word.
These things have to be in our lives first, because training our children is an extension of our own relationship with, obedience to, and knowledge of God. It starts with us. If we are not doing these things, we can’t raise our children in the Lord.
Questions for Reflection
- How are you doing?
- Do you have a relationship with God?
- Do you live according to God’s commandments?
- Are you actively working toward learning more about God’s Word?
Post adapted from my sermon Training Our Children in the Lord