Priorities in the Christian Life

#3. Children

By Dr. Ron Tardif (D.Div. C.C.)

Priorities in the Christian Life: The Series

Priority #1: God
Priority #2: Spouse
Priority #3: Children
Priority #4: Occupation
Priority #5: Ministry

Many preachers' kids are victims of ministry for misappropriating their importance. If your job or ministry causes you to spend more than "normal" time away from home, then quit your job; quit your ministry. Remember that you only get one shot at training your God given gifts of children.
Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it. Proverbs 22:6
An important thing to remember about this verse is that it tells you what to do for them when they are young: train them. It tells you what to expect from them when they are old: they will not depart from it. Lots of us forget that there is a gap in that verse. I like to think of it being the "teen years." This verse does not imply that you and/or your children will not have struggles. Remember Ephesians 6:12? Yes, this is where we see that satan (small "s" intended) desires to have you, your children or any other believer so as to silence their Christian witness. It's important to remember that our enemy is not our kids; it is satan and his workers.

So just how should we impress on them this training?
"You shall teach them diligently to your sons and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way and when you lie down and when you rise up. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand and they shall be as frontals on your forehead. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates." Deuteronomy 6:7-9
It is a HUGE task. But it is also one of the most important jobs you will ever have while here on planet earth. Don't shirk your responsibility no matter the reason. It's a command from God after all.

It's good to know of what some of the problems are in families:

Men tend to be chauvinistic. Women tend to usurp authority. Children are often disobedient and disrespectful to parents and all authorities. We parents tend to provoke our children to wrath (Ephesians 6:4). We are told not to do that, but to raise them up to learn the instructions of the Lord.
Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord. Ephesians 6:4

The Lord said to Moses, "Speak to the Israelites and say to them: 'I am the Lord your God. You must not do as they do in Egypt, where you used to live, and you must not do as they do in the land of Canaan, where I am bringing you. Do not follow their practices. You must obey my laws and be careful to follow my decrees. I am the Lord your God. Keep my decrees and laws, for the person who obeys them will live by them. I am the Lord. Leviticus 18:1-4
Understand there are agencies out in the world trying to do your job for you by robing your children from these teachings. The IYC (International Year of the Child) in 1977 encouraged public schools to teach/liberate children from traditional morals and values, parental authority, physical punishment, nationalism, patriotism, capitalism, sexual freedom, homosexual rights, abortion and condoms. Quite an agenda eh? Want to know why parenting is difficult nowadays? Remember Ephesians 6:12.

So, how do we combat these attacks? Want things to go well for your children? What is the solution?
Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. "Honor your father and mother" — which is the first commandment with a promise — "so that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth." Ephesians 6:1-3.
1. People tend to place their jobs ahead of their children / or ahead of their spouse. Don't do that.

2. Don't try to be their best friends. You are their parent. That's a God distinctive role you need to act out.

3. Have regular family devotions.

4. Find, attend, support a local bible-preaching church, as a family.

5. Respect your children. Look at them in the eye and really listen to them. Next to God and your spouse, they are/should be the most important people in the world to you.

6. Don't provoke your children to wrath. Most of all, don't provoke your children to wrath. Don't do that. Stop it.

7. Don't just tell your kids you "love" them. LOVE THEM by your actions, activities, mutual interests, etc. When you do tell them that you love them, they should say "I know that mommy/daddy". That should music to your ears.

In order to have the proper priorities in life, God has to come first. You can't prioritize Someone you don't know. And you can't be God's child if you're not born again.

TagsBiblical-Truth  | Christian-Life  | Family-Life  | Personal-Relationships

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Published on 2-20-17