Day 244: Praise's Progeny
Psalm 78:4 (AV)
4 We will not hide them from their children, shewing to the generation to come the praises of the LORD, and his strength, and his wonderful works that he hath done.
Are we passing our faith onto our children?
We should be careful that what we transfer to them isn't by our mouths only, but by our lives. Children observe their parents more than they listen to them. They watch us, our interactions, our times in prayer and meditation, and mostly, our praise. Emotions may not be the best guide, but they tend to create the most significant impact on the human psyche.
I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel. --Maya Angelou
Praise penetrates the soul. It should engage the mind, emotions, and will. Our children need to hear our heartfelt giving of thanks to God, in good times and bad. If we haven't passed on our faith to our children, what kind of legacy are we leaving? Heartbreak awaits us when we realize we've allowed our children to play sports, go to college, and pass on a good work ethic (hopefully), but do not teach them the necessity of a meaningful walk with God. We should consider the reality that the child we are raising might be the next D. L. Moody or Billy Sunday. Whether that takes place or not, if we teach our children to be faithful to God, committed to His praise and glory, we're a success in God's eyes. If they decide that's not for them, that won't be our fault.
Listen to Steve Farrar talks about the importance of godly child-rearing:
In the early years of his youth, David was obscure. He was also unappreciated by his own father. When Samuel came to the house of Jesse, he came with the purpose of anointing one of Jesse's sons to become the next king. God had chosen one of these boys to succeed Saul. When Samuel saw David's older brother, Eliab, he thought he'd found his man. But God said no. As Samuel looked at the rest of the seven older sons of Jesse, none of them rang true. Samuel asked Jesse, "Are these all of your sons?"
Jesse replied that they were, except for his youngest son, David, who was out minding the sheep. They brought him in and the rest is history. David was God's choice to be king. And David's own father hadn't regarded him highly enough to include him in the meeting with the visiting prophet. It's always a tragedy when a father overlooks the potential in his own son. Jesse was raising the future king of Israel under his own roof, but he didn't have the vision to see it.
Do you have a son? Whatever you do, don't make Jesse's mistake. God will choose leaders for the next generation. And that great leader of the next generation may be running around your house right now with a diaper that needs changing and a nose that needs wiping. So make sure you take good care of the kid.1
1 Farrar, Steve. Finishing Strong: How a Man Can Go the Distance. Sisters, OR: Multnomah Books, 1995. Print.
I know that quote was lengthy, but please consider the reality and severity of the situation. We, as parents, have the tremendous responsibility to raise our children to know Jesus.