I love watching my kids grow up and start to show interest in things. My daughter will be a year in a few weeks and she has started to play football with me. I know that sounds strange for an 11 month old, but she really does. She carries the football to me and drops it on me. I hand it back to her, she walks around and then drops it on me again. It is quite entertaining.
As you can see, she is ready for the big game tonight between the Packers and the Bears.
I will add that this has started slowly for her. Even a few months back she was looking at a football with great excitement.
It just goes to show you that not only does she have a great sports mind, but also that the influence of parents is significant. If I didn’t care about football, I would venture to guess that my kids would not care about it right now. My sons like to fish. Would they like to fish if they had never been fishing? I doubt it.
My point is that when it comes to teaching out kids to follow Jesus, it needs to start with us, as parents, following Jesus first. Kids will follow the lead of their parents. Too much emphasis is put into having a family devotion time or somehow manufacturing this experience where they decide to follow Jesus. You cannot manufacture it. It must happen as an outflow of your daily life. This is what people mean when they say that often more is “caught” verse “taught” in the lives of our children. The home must be a place where Jesus is exalted and obeyed. The decisions we make, the things we watch, and the way we treat people all must come out of that relationship with Jesus Christ. Kids will catch on to that and turn it around on you later. I know that because my kids already do that to me.
If you want your kids to love God, then you love Him first. If you want your children to see the importance of being in church on Sunday, then by all means be there yourself. If you want to teach your children the importance of honesty, be honest with them. Our children are the most precious gift and responsibility we have. Let’s be intentional about how we shape them by being intentional about our relationship with the God who shapes us.
Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind – Matthew 22:37