Can God trust you to raise godly children for the next generation?
“For I have chosen him, so that he will direct his children and his household after him to keep the way of the LORD by doing what is right and just, so that the LORD will bring about for Abraham what he has promised him.” – Genesis 18:19 NIV
Anyone who has heard me speak on my spiritual life would take note that I have just one regret: that I didn’t get born again sooner! Yes, I got born again as a teenager and yes I was raised in a Christian home but I wasn’t raised to be a godly child.
As a child, I was trained to pray, memorize scripture from Sunday school and sing worship songs in church but that was it! No one told me about Jesus and his work on the cross. Yes, we were taught at Sunday school; but at home no one told me about it or that being a Christian was a way of life.
I only knew God on Sundays and during morning devotions.
This is the sad tale of most of us; our parents are Christians who carried us along in their walk with God and hoped we figure it out when we are older and become godly children. A certain woman even told me that she didn’t want to force any religion on her child and wants her child to choose which god she would follow when she is old enough.
This is why some folks, though they are in church are still not born again and living for God because they were raised to be lax with their religion.
The irony of it is that when you then become a teenager and start manifesting teenage traits these same parents come out and start lamenting about how the child was raised in a Christian home while all along the child never knew God.
Direct your children onto the right path, and when they are older, they will not leave it. – Proverbs 22:6 NLT
My fellowship has been studying Robert Lairdon’s God’s General Vol. 1 and am so impressed with the great work done by these men and women but something stood out for a number of them. Their parents either taught them about God, took them to church, prayed in front of them or gave them over to God. Of all the mistakes made by this men of God, one that touched me most was of William Branham. This man grew up without any Christian presence and no one to teach him about God. His parents were Christians but his mom stopped attending church because the father wasn’t going and the only time he saw his mom pray was when they were losing their things. He went on to do great things for God but erred greatly towards the end of his life and its even documented that his life was ended abruptly by God to prevent further damage he had caused to the Christian body because of his false doctrines. Very Sad!
I’m writing this because even though a lot of people agree with me on the above yet they are doing it in their lives. I want to give you 5 practical ways in which you can set your children up for a relationship with God.
- Dealing with needs – I read a story in my devotional (TWFT) where this woman raised her children to see God as their ultimate provider. Whenever the kids come to her with a request, she would ask them to kneel down with her and pray together asking God for it and when the things came she would tell them it’s God that provided it and they will also kneel down and thank God for it. This would teach your children at an early age to depend on God; something a lot of us are still struggling with as adults.
- Salvation – as early as possible tell your children about their fallen nature and that they have a saviour who is called Jesus. Tell them the story of the cross and what Christ has done for them. Don’t just paint it as a fictional story, bring it to live. Let them know you are serious. Tell them what’s wrong with the world and why they can’t be a part of it. Tell them the truth about God; make them aware that (i) they are in a fallen world and are inherently sinners (ii) someone has come to take the burden (iii) you have given your life to this special someone (iv) he is waiting for them.
- Prayer – I saw prayer as a chore growing up and many of us still do; we have an understanding of prayer as something you do as last resort when you absolutely have to. Don’t teach your children a prayer format! Let them relate with God as they relate with you, like their father. Pray in tongues in front of them and lay hands on them to receive the Holy Spirit and pray in tongues as well. Yes, children can walk in the manifestations of the Spirit; there is no age requirement
- Dressing, music, movies – This one pains me soo much! It’s a very common sight in church to see a decently dressed woman with scarf on her head, skirt to her knees coming with a child that is wearing a mini skirt and a tube midi top that exposes the navel. The mother would claim its just kid’s fashion and yet cry out when that child turns 18 and still wears miniskirts and midi tops. Many so called Christian mothers can’t wear what they are putting on their kids to wear to church/school/parties etc. At a lot of birthday parties of kids from church and even church parties, you would hear secular music and DJs and you would see pastor’s kids and others dancing to the latest dance step and yet when the kids grow up and start smoking weed, the parents cry. Why do we dress our kids and expose them to secular music that we the parents can’t stand?
You are speaking in tongues and your 2 year old is sagging or twerking and giving a lap dance? Godly children huh?
Set a standard for your family that applies to all. In this house we don’t drink! We don’t wear revealing clothes! We don’t listen to secular music! And then follow it too as the parents; don’t let your child catch you drinking in the room or doing shaku shaku at the back of the house or watching porn in the midnight. Raise your house as a standard and guard it jealously.
- Manifestations of the Spirt – Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good – 1 Corinthians 12:7
No Christian can go far in life without the working of the Holy Spirit in their lives. Many of us know God and have seen him in operation; we’ve been healed, gotten jobs, money etc. but do your children know? Most Christian children backslide later in life because they begin to doubt God. The popular Grey’s anatomy TV show in its current season (14) has in some episodes alluding to God being deaf or not hearing or not functional etc. and sad as it is, this is the general belief in the secular world. People are left doubting if God is even real when they don’t see any manifestations and just see calamity all around.
As parents you are your kid’s first evangelist!
Brag about God to them; tell them about the wonderful things God has done. Tell them about the miracles you have seen, heard and believed and build their faith in God. Inform them of the power in the name of Jesus, the power in the blood of Jesus, the gifts and works of the Holy Spirit. Make God as real as possible and teach them practically how to move in the Spirit. Not only will they be unstoppable in the world, they would solid and become powerhouses for God.
Raising children is not easy! Raising children in this century is very hard! Raising children with God is very easy, you just have to put the focus on God. It’s not too early or late to start. Some people deceive themselves by saying children are guiltless before God and if they die they go to heaven. Maybe a day old baby; because a baby of 6 months already knows when they are being stubborn and unrealistic (ask any mom!); they sin, maybe not willfully but as a result of their fallen nature.
So it’s not too late to tell your child about God. Start from when they are in the womb!
Folly is bound up in the heart of a child, but the rod of discipline will drive it far away. – Provs 22:15 NIV
He who withholds his rod hates his son, But he who loves him disciplines him diligently. – Prov 13:24 NASB
But to each one of us grace has been given as Christ apportioned it. – Ephesians 4:7