August 10, 2015
As our children start back to school this fall, we know they will have challenges with homework, tests, and relationships. And while we may be helping them deal with these realities of life, are we equipping them to deal with a world that is making a concentrated effort to remove God from the classroom and every other facet of our society? Do we give them a foundation of faith that can weather the storms they will undoubtedly encounter, both now and in the future?
At my church, the youth program is called “Think Orange.” The color orange comes from mixing the colors red and yellow. The metaphor associates the color red with the blood of the family and the color yellow with the Son. Think Orange refers to a joint effort between the church and family to teach faith to our children. However, we all know that responsibility ultimately lies with the parents, not the church. And one hour of Sunday school a week is just not enough.
In Deuteronomy 6:5–7 God shares the greatest commandment. “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. And these words that I command of you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children … .“ There is also a beautiful passage—Ephesians 6—that tells us to bring our children up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.
So parents, here’s the good news: Your kids' spiritual walk and strength are up to you. The “bad” news is, your kids’ spiritual walk and strength are up to you! It’s a big responsibility!
I have two grown children, a son 31, and a daughter 25. Additionally, my wife and I adopted two more sons, now 7 and 8. When I look at the two little guys, it seems they will be young and carefree forever. But as we have experienced, those moments are fleeting. They will leave the nest in another 10 years and face the world on their own—unless they have faith—then they will never be alone. Whether we like it or not, in reality our job as parents is to prepare our children for launch, and we should do all we can to prepare them while we still have the chance.
An excellent education prepares them for business or an occupation. A great faith prepares them for life!