The past two nights my family has had the wonderful privilege of being a part of Abilene Baptist Church’s AWANA ministry’s recognition services. On Wednesday night I watched as our children received their awards for scripture memory, Sunday School attendance and club attendance. Last night we enjoyed a time of recognizing the AWANA workers at their annual banquet. It was a tremendous time with people who have a great love for God, His Word and children.
The verse that has been on my heart the past two days comes from Psalm 119:11. It is a very familiar verse, and the Psalmist does reflect the verse upon himself. However, I can’t help but apply it to the wonderful ministry I have seen the past two days. This wonderful verse says, “Your word I have hidden in my heart, That I might not sin against You!” As parents our primary responsibility is to teach God’s truth to our children. We are to make sure that they don’t just know the stories, but the ONE behind the stories. We must make sure that there is not just head knowledge, but heart knowledge. The lessons we share and teach must move past mere mental comprehension to life transformation.
I believe that the best way to accomplish this tremendous task is by hiding God’s word in the hearts of our children. It is by living our the truth of the lessons we teach in front of them every day. In Deuteronomy 6:4-9 God says –
“Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one!
5 You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength.
6 “And these words which I command you today shall be in your heart.
7 You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up.
8 You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes.
9 You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.”
This passage tells us as parents of the responsibility that we have of living a life before our children that not only teaches, but reinforces, the truth of God’s Word. It speaks of the awesome obligation that we have of showing our children what it really means to love the Lord with all of our heart, soul and strength. These are the “life lessons” that we should be teaching to our children.
So, with this in mind, how can we hide God’s word in the young hearts of our children? What are some simple and fun ways of making sure that they “get it” when it comes to their relationship with God and His Word? Well, after we got home last night from the AWANA workers banquet, Kim and I began to discuss some ways that we have used – and some we haven’t yet – to teach about God and the truth of Scripture to our three children.
Here are just a few simple suggestions on how to hide God’s Word in the hearts of your young children. You can help hide God’s Word in your children’s hearts by:
* Regular family devotions.
* Learning and singing Bible songs.
* Scripture memory.
* Application by observation.
* Ministries such as AWANA and Sunday School.
* Watching Biblical movies and cartoons.
* Reading Bible stories together.
* Handling tough times with grace and faith.
* Prayers before meals.
* Being faithful to church.
* Discussing the sermon together after church.
* Showing that you have a real, daily walk with God.
These are just a few, simple suggestions on how to hide the truth of the Word of God and a love for the God of the Word in the hearts of your children.
What other ways have you used to accomplish this awesome task as a parent?