My son, keep your father’s command and do not forsake your mother’s teaching. Bind them always on your heart; fasten them round your neck. When you walk, they will guide you; when you sleep, they will watch over you; when you awake, they will speak to you.
Proverbs 6:20-22 (NIV)
Read: Proverbs 6
Consider: Some parents are fearful of telling their children what to do and how to live. This may be because they are concerned that they might alienate their children and spoil their relationship with them. The Bible doesn’t tell us to teach our children if we fancy doing it, or only to teach them certain things. The Bible encourages us to teach our children about all aspects of life.
Proverbs 6 is written as a father speaking to his son, but its message is equally appropriate for daughters. It concerns a topic that most parents find difficult to discuss with their children: morality. Society today tells us that there are no moral absolutes. It is generally accepted that each individual has the right to do what they like, provided it doesn’t hurt other people. The Bible, however, is clear that morality is not a matter of individual choice and it teaches a way of life in conformity with God’s standards.
I recently listened to a radio programme where a famous footballer was interviewed. He was asked about his marriage, particularly as having been married to the same woman for nineteen years is unusual in his profession. His reply was that both he and his wife had been brought up in households where their parents taught them what they believed were good life values. Now it would be unrealistic of me to say that these parents were Christians, as there was no indication given in the interview. It is significant that they did take seriously the need to share good moral values with their children. This was despite the risk of them being unpopular.
If you are a parent I can’t tell you exactly when and at what age your children will challenge your moral values, but I can assure you that it will come. Your job, as they are growing up, is to teach them how to live, in the hope that when they are confronted with moral dilemmas they will have the strength to resist the temptations.
Pray: Father, help us as Christian parents to share Biblical moral values with our children. Protect us from being fearful of telling them how you want us to live holy lives. Amen