“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.”
One of the hardest things a parent will do is to teach their children in the ways of the LORD. Too many parents avoid the effort in teaching because of the inconvenience it takes to do it, but those who are not afraid to be inconvenienced will never regret the time they spent teaching their children. In the verse above, God challenges parents with an obligation to teach their children. In this verse, there are several lessons that will help any parent in teaching their children.
First, it’s never too early to start training. One of the more common questions young parents ask me is when should they start training their children. The answer is, “Now!” My wife and I started training my daughter as soon as she was born. We played Scripture for her at night while she slept. I know some may think this is extreme, but when we could not get through to her because of her infancy, God’s Word has a way of getting into the heart of a young child and help them understand right and wrong because He is the One who made them. Always start training your children as soon as you have them; you will never regret this effort.
Second, it’s never too often to teach a lesson. I would often say to my mother, “I already heard that a hundred times.” She always responded, “Well, you are about ready to hear it for the hundred and first time.” Repetition is the key to training. The verse above shows that you teach your children by repetition.
Third, there is never a bad time to teach your children. Whenever a situation allows you to have a teaching moment with your child, take advantage of it. God sends situations into your life regularly so that you can teach your children the ways of the LORD. Take advantage of those times, because those times become great object lessons to make the truth of greater impact in the mind of the child.
Fourth, it is always your obligation to live God’s ways in front of your children. Your lessons will never have an impact on your children if you don’t live what you are teaching them. In fact, if you don’t live what you are teaching your children, what you teach becomes a joke. If you want your children to be faithful to church, you had better be faithful to church. If you want your children to walk with God, you had better walk with God. If you want your children to do right no matter how hard doing right will be, you had better do right when it doesn’t benefit you. More lessons will be learned from the life lived than the lesson taught. One of the greatest mistakes you can make as a parent is not to live what you are trying to teach your children.
Fifth, validate your teaching from the Word of God. Verse 20 says, “And when thy son asketh thee in time to come, saying, What mean the testimonies…” Many parents never teach their children from God’s Word why something is right or wrong, and they regret it later. My friend, you are not the authority of life, but God is; you would do yourself a great service of showing your children from the Scriptures why you live the way you do. When your children have learned from the Scriptures why they live the way they do, you will have a better chance of your children walking in the ways of the LORD when they leave home.