I was presented with an interesting question last week.
In conversation with a good friend of mine, I was asked if I would rather my kids have all the knowledge in the world or be able to fully understand the love of Christ. As I sat and worked through that question, I, in every way, acknowledged the importance of knowledge and education (teachers, please hear me say that… I appreciate you so much) but landed on how much more important it was for me that they know the love of Christ. As we prepared to head back to school, I dreamed of a place where both could exist.
Luckily for us, we don’t live in a world with many absolutes. We rarely find ourselves in a situation where we have to simply pick between “one or the other.” But having spent about a decade in student ministries, as well as the privilege of having four kids of my own, I’ve realized how much intentionality needs to go into making sure my kids know and understand the love of Christ, especially in the hustle and bustle of back to school life.
Just yesterday, having accidentally slept in, I almost sent my kids off to school without stopping to pray with them because we were going to be late. It genuinely got me thinking about what I am doing (or not doing) on the daily to ensure I am pointing my kids towards Jesus in my every day routine and vernacular.
Having had the opportunity to walk alongside students for a third of my life, I believe with every part of me that God did not mess up by making you your kid’s parent. And in the same breath, I believe that you are your kid’s number one influencer in all arenas of life. If any other thoughts enter your mind, know that those are the words of the enemy – not God.Deuteronomy 6:6-9 states, “These commandments I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the doorframe of your houses and your gates.” Essentially, the writer is telling you is to make God a part of everything you do, no matter what.
No matter the situation, make God a part of it. With the reality of this week in mind, as our students are once again headed into another crazy busy school year, make God a part of what you do. Leave some sticky notes on the mirror with Bible verses and encouragement. Stop your kids in their tracks and tell them how thankful you are that God gave them to you. Stop and pray with your kids before you leave the house for school. You’ll be amazed to see what God can do with intentionality like that.
And sure, you’ll more than likely be met with the standard eye roll when you initiate, but pointing them to Jesus will be the most important thing you ever do. Let me say that again: pointing them to Jesus will be the most important thing you ever do. Because here’s the deal: while you might be met with an eye roll, the person those beautiful little eyes belong to will eventually have little eye rollers themselves. And you better believe while they may seem like they’re letting it go in one ear and out the other, they’ll be talking about how amazing it was you did that when they get older. Better yet, they get to continue the cycle when they have kids of their own.
So what are you doing now to make God a part of everything you do with your kids? How are you pointing them to Jesus? God desires for you to point your kids – better yet, His kids – back to Him. So let’s do this!