In our “instant gratification focused” world today, it’s no surprise that children and youth are suffering! It doesn’t help that parents seemed to have forgotten how to parent, leaving kids to learn how to grow up and mature on their own. Even parents who profess to believe in Messiah Yeshua and G-d’s Biblical principles seem to be failing at passing this down to their kids as well. This month I would like to share what I have learned about what it means to spiritually train up children and youth.
The first principle is that training up a child starts by recognizing who the Boss is: G-d! Deuteronomy 6:4-9 makes clear to us as parents that we must model committed faith if we hope to see it develop in our children.
The second principle is that training up a child requires a lot of work over time! Proverbs 22:6 is used by too many parents who seek to console themselves with the hope that their child is eternally saved since they took them to services where they said a prayer at 4 years of age, thereby sealing their eternity status, even though they haven’t attended a place of worship since they were teens and are living godlessly in their current lives. Parents & Grandparents, this Hebrew text doesn’t refer to teaching little kids. Instead it speaks about intentionally working to spiritually form adolescents: our teens and young adults!
The third principle is that training up a child demands a proper relationship in the home! Ephesians 6:1-4 is clear: children are to obey and respect their parents. At the same time parents better be disciplining and discipling their children in love. Knowing your role, position and expectation in the home is critical!
G-d’s calling for our lives is to make disciples, especially our own kids. How are you doing with that?
Forward for Messiah,
Rabbi & Director