Healthy Leaders


Show Me Jesus!

Kathleen HershbergerKathleen Hershberger

‘Twas our first duet, my sister and me. Being all of three years old, I sat in the pew next to my mom, waiting for the cue. Happily swinging my feet, I announced, “I have to go potty!”

Quickly pulling my little head to hers, Mom whispered, “Ask Jesus to make it go away, and He will.”

“How do I do that, Mommy?”

“Just talk to Him like He is your best friend because He is!”

That day began a lifelong adventure to know this best friend. How her whispered words affected my life she and I will probably never know this side of heaven. Yet, even during the rebellious years, I’ve continued to seek Him and yearned to become like Him.

Today I look at our world and how much the culture has changed to reflect a pervasive attitude of self-focus.  Yet, God’s Word has never changed and still instructs us as parents and grandparents to train up our children in Him.

So how do we train them up to know Jesus as their best friend[1]?

Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one!  You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength. And these words which I command you today shall be in your heart. 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. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates. (Deuteronomy 6:4-9, NKJV)

Considering God’ instructions, we can see how to teach children. First, we need to know God is our God. We have to be growing in our relationship with Him, so that we know Whom we are bringing our children to.

Second, we love God with everything in us and with everything we do. We show this by living His commands that He places in us.[2] In the workplace, do we prefer our fellow employee or employer over ourselves? In the marketplace, are we considerate of other customers and wait patiently in line? At home, do we love and respect our spouse? Are we a team raising our children up in the way that they should go?  At Wednesday night Children’s Ministry or Sunday morning, are we sensitive to the children’s needs and how they learn? Can we flex when the lesson we’ve planned is crashing?

Third, as we “train up[3]” our children, are we teaching them God’s Word? King James says “teach diligently” so that their hearts are softened and being pierced with God’s Word. Teach when you get up in the morning, when you sit at the table, when you walk along the road or drive down it. End the day with God’s Word.

Last, while we’re training our children and helping them memorize God’s Word, we should join them and commit His word to memory.

I have hidden your Word in my heart that I might not sin against you. (Psalm 119:11)

Many times in my life, the Spirit has brought a verse or verses to my heart that were memorized years ago, and the temptation has vanished as I’ve recited them aloud!

Parents, grandparents and children’s ministry workers, bring your little children to Jesus, so that He can touch them! Thank Him for the privilege of partnering with Him as you continue to diligently teach them!

[1] John 17:3
[2] Jeremiah 31:33
[3] Proverbs 22:6

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