Christian parenting has eternal weight. Give them Jesus or else the world will grasp them firm. Proverbs 22:6 “Train up a child in the way he should go; and when he is old, he will not depart from it.”
Throughout scripture, God is pretty clear about the responsibility He places in the hands of parents. None is more clear than Deuteronomy 6:6-7 “And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.”
We have a responsibility as parents to teach our children what matters to God. It doesn’t mean forcing them into a certain set of beliefs or rituals; rather, it means demonstrating real faith-one that puts the focus on loving God and loving others. There is no greater purpose we can have in life than reflecting God’s image for our children to see.
Our children are going to learn about the world around them and their role in it. If they don’t learn from us, they will learn from someone else. It’s our responsibility to use our time with our kids wisely.
When writing to the Ephesians, Paul encourages the church to be “followers of God, as dear children; and walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweetsmelling savour.” Ephesians 5:1-2. That encourages me and reminds me of how I’m supposed to live and love. But, it also reminds me that my children are in my care and looking for my example. Our children imitate us. They learn how to act by seeing how we act. They’ll only know love by seeing how we love.
It’s not likely that Proverbs 22:6 is a guarantee of success for committed, Christ-following parents. But, it is important to recognize the truth the verse contains. God has given us an incredible responsibility by placing children in our care. The family is a primary mechanism God uses to grow His kingdom and grow His people. As a result, it’s our duty to teach our children about God. We are in an influential position, and what we do today will matter in our kids’ lives tomorrow.