"Knowing God results in every other kind of understanding." (Proverbs 9:10 TLB)
The most important lesson that we teach our kids is knowing and loving God.
You don't have all the answers. If you haven't figured that out yet, you will. You don't have all the answers for the questions your kids are going to ask. I don't mean things like, "Why is the sky blue?" or "Why do dogs bark?" — for which you make up answers to satisfy them for awhile. As they get older, they ask questions like, "Why did God make me this way?" or "If God is loving and in control of everything, why did he allow Grandma to die?" Questions like that are very tough to answer, and my reservoir of answers is very small. But it's my job as a parent to point my kids to a God who does have all the answers.
You can sit down and tell your kids things about God, and that has some effect. But if you want to be even more effective, you have to be a role model. The best way to teach your kids is by modeling for them the truths you want them to understand.
Sometimes parents make the mistake by hiding from their kids the struggles that they're facing, because they want to protect them. But in certain situations, sharing with our kids the things that are going on in our lives helps them see how to get through those struggles. When you're experiencing financial difficulties, how better to teach your kids to have faith in God than by constantly expressing to them, "Yeah, it's tough right now, but we have a God who is faithful to us, and he'll provide for us"? If they don't see our trust in God and his deliverance in our lives, why should they rely on him?
Proverbs 9:10 says, "Knowing God results in every other kind of understanding" (TLB). Knowing God is the foundation of life. Many parents who are not even Christians talk about God — but that's not enough. We need to point our kids to Jesus Christ, their Savior, by modeling for them every day what we know to be true about God and his Son.
Talk About It
- How are you doing in this area of pointing your kids to God?
- How does your life show them what it means to be a person who is 100 percent sold out to Jesus Christ?
- By your model, what are you telling your kids means the most in life? Is it a job, money, hobby, pleasure, or your relatinahip with Jesus?
Rick Warren is the founding pastor of Saddleback Church in Lake Forest, Calif., one of America's largest and most influential churches. Rick is author of the New York Times bestseller "The Purpose Driven Life." His book, "The Purpose Driven Church," was named one of the 100 Christian books that changed the 20th century. He is also the founder of Pastors.com, a global Internet community for pastors.
This devotional © 2012 by Rick Warren. All rights reserved. Used by permission.