As I read in Proverbs chapters 1-6 these past two weeks, I noticed the pleading tone to Solomon’s address to his son, and then to all his children. Over and over he pleads with them to hear his instruction, to remember and follow his wise counsel. He says to them…Hear me! Hear me!
My son, forget not my law; but let thine heart keep my commandments: Proverbs 3:1
Hear, O my son, and receive my sayings; and the years of thy life shall be many. Proverbs 4:10
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My son, attend to my words; incline thine ear unto my sayings. Proverbs 4:20
Hear me now therefore, O ye children, and depart not from the words of my mouth. Proverbs 5:7
Can’t you just hear the yearning of Solomon’s heart? —“O my son,” and “O ye children” (Proverbs 5:7)
A mother’s heart, as well as, a father’s heart, longs for our children to hear us and take our instructions and warnings to heart. I know it breaks my heart to know that even as much as I’ve tried to teach and train my children in God’s ways, they will each still probably have to learn some things the hard way…the way of disobedience and God’s chastisement.
The same way I had to learn.
But, oh how I wish I could spare them. That they would listen instead. And not repeat some of my own mistakes!
We long, I think, to just be able to pour into our children what we’ve learned, and that be it.
Instant Christ followers!
But it doesn’t work like that. Does it? It didn’t for me. How about you?
Regardless, it is extremely important that we not simply give up and say, “Well, they’re just going to do what they will anyway.”
No! We need to teach and talk to them all the while they are with us. Repeatedly. For repetition is the key to learning.
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. Deuteronomy 6:7
If we’ve obeyed this command, then our children should hopefully be able to rattle off a few things Mama always said. Hopefully those things, those truths, will pop up in their minds at moments of temptation and guide them to the right path.
Or else, those truths, will be used of God to guide them back to Him whenever they do stray in the future.
With that in mind, what would you want your children to remember of all the things you’ve tried to teach them as they grew up? What would God want them to remember?
Make a list.
Having a list will help you look for those teachable moments and know what you need to be emphasizing in your daily lives. And hopefully, will keep you focused on the most important things, helping you not to major on the minor stuff in their lives. Those things that might bother you, but aren’t crucial to their spiritual well-being and growth. You know, a pick-your-battles kind of help.
When our girls were around 8 and 5, I made such a list…My Goals for Our Girls. I have since modified it somewhat. And I’d like to share it with you here. These are the truths I hope they take with them into life, whatever else I’ve said or done in raising them.
For some of the items on my list, I’ve included a link to other articles that further explain these truths.
O My Daughters, At Least Remember This…
• God loves you.
And always will. He died to pay for your sins for you. He couldn’t love you more! You will always be as close to God as you want to be. (John 3:16 Romans 8:38-39 James 4:8)
See also ⇒ The Simplicity of the Gospel
• Mama and Daddy will always love you.
No matter what.
• You have worth.
You matter. Your worth is found in your Saviour. (Luke 12:6-7 Romans 8:15-17 Colossians 2:10)
• You have a God-ordained purpose.
God has a plan for your life. Seek Him, and you’ll find it. (Ephesians 2:10 2 Corinthians 5:15)
See also ⇒ What If I Miss God’s Plan For Me?
• God’s truth is absolute.
It will not change, as God does not change. Determine right and wrong by the scriptures, not culture. (John 17:17 John 14:6 Malachi 3:6 Psalm 119:89)
See also ⇒ What is Truth?
• God’s way is perfect.
Live your life His way, according to His Word. Seek His direction…in His Word and through prayer and wise counsel. (Psalm 18:30)
See also ⇒ Abundant Life…Let Go, And Let God!
• Love is a choice, and marriage is for life.
So, choose wisely…a man whose heart attitudes and beliefs align with scripture. Someone who loves God with his heart and his life. Someone who walks the talk. Love isn’t something you fall in and out of. It is a daily choice to obey God’s command. (1 Corinthians 13:4-8 2 Corinthians 6:14 Matthew 19:3-6 Titus 2:4)
• Forgiveness is easiest when done quickly.
Forgiveness is easiest when sought for or given immediately. Forgiving others doesn’t excuse or minimize their wrong; it frees you to move on! It breaks the chain tying you to that hurt. (Ephesians 4:32 Matthew 6:15)
• Trust God when you don’t understand.
Trust God’s love for you. (see #1) (Proverbs 3:5-6)
See also ⇒ Count It All Joy! Really?
• This life will often be hard.
You are not promised or owed a perfectly trouble-free life. But you can be happy regardless. In fact, happiness is your choice! So smile, and be happy! (John 16:33 Philippians 4:4 Romans 8:28)
• Church is vitally important.
Church is ordained of God—for your spiritual protection/accountability, growth, fellowship, and support. (Ephesians 4:11-16 Hebrews 10:25 Psalm 92:13)
• Life is short.
Love and serve God today, while you still can. Make the Lord your first priority. Walk with God. And tell others of Jesus before it is too late for them! (Psalm 90:12 2 Corinthians 6:2)
See also ⇒ Walking With God…What Does That Even Mean?
• Teach your children to know, love, and serve God.
If your children don’t know Jesus, they can’t teach their children. And the light of the gospel goes out for our family’s descendants! (Deuteronomy 6:6-7 Joshua 24:15)
• All that you have is God’s. So tithe.
Don’t rob God…give Him His tithes and offerings. Seek Him in your finances. When we trust and give, God provides. (Malachi 3:8 Haggai 1:6 Philippians 4:18-19 Malachi 3:10)
• God sees all and knows all.
Your thoughts, your words, your actions. And He will always know right where you are. A comfort, or else, a warning. (Hebrews 13:5 Jeremiah 23:24)
• Prayer works!
God wants to hear and answer your prayers. (James 5:16 1 Peter 5:7)
See also ⇒ 3 Things God Looks For When We Pray
I hope you are inspired to make your own list. Or, you can simply use mine. After you make your list, I’d also suggest making a sign for your home like the “House Rules” or “In This House We…” signs I’ve seen. Something that all of your family can see every day. (Deuteronomy 6:9)
I wish I had done that. But it’s not too late. And I’ll at least have it for my future grandchildren and visitors to see!
May the Lord bless our efforts to lead our children to know and love and serve Him!
I cling to the promise in Hosea 10:12—
Sow to yourselves in righteousness, reap in mercy;
Drawing nigh to Him,
LET’S TALK ABOUT IT
What is it that you feel so necessary that your children remember in life?
What other truths would you want to add to my list? Or what other scripture references would you use for these points? I might like to update my list.