The Proverb is true about training up a child in the way they should go and they will not soon depart from it. But what is the way they should go?
They should first come to know Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior, and they should do what he commands. Second, we need to teach our children to obey, respect, and honor their parents. But I would like to talk about another primary training I seldom hear discussed.
Several verses in the Word of God speak to God’s reason for us being here. His thinking goes something like this, “I planned for you to be here, and for you to come to know me. Once we have that relationship I have planned in advance for you to do good works, in fact I originally created you with that in mind. You are here to do the good works I have planned for you, so walk in the Spirit I gave you and practice what you are supposed to do. And if you see me lived out in another believer, learn from them, be trained in the right way to live and practice doing good works.”
One verse that echo’s this is found in Ephesians 2,“For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.”
How often do we talk about the good works we should “walk in” and how regularly to we practice doing them? We value highly the education we give our children in reading, writing, and arithmetic. We tell them to do their homework, we help them if we can, we intentionally give them the time and encouragement they need to practice it. But what if we spent just as much time and energy practicing doing good works on a daily basis? How much time and effort do we put into training up our children in the way they should go?
For some we just need to connect the values we are currently working on with a good deed or action. For others we may not even know what it would look like and need to seek advice. Certainly encouraging words could be used to build someone up who has been going through a hard time, to show compassion, that phone call could be the very work God has for you to do. It is a discipline and habit to “walk in” the good works Christ Jesus is doing in us. Connecting this concept to the values we teach our children will remind them of why they are doing it, why they are here, and it will accomplish the work of God in them.
So what is something good Jesus wants you to do today through His Spirit at work in you?
Next Week’s Author: Tricia Hodges