There's a room in our house which has to be my favourite, we call it our snug. It used to be a dining room, then a TV room, and now it just has two chairs and a bookcase in it. It almost feels like this room has no purpose and yet I love to be in it. It's one of the warmest and quietest rooms and it's the place I go when I want to sit and read, or pray, or worship Jesus. I love this room, just me & Him in that quiet place, with the doors closed and no interruptions. But I got to thinking recently, am I doing an injustice to my children by doing this? How do they see, how do they know, really know what it's like if I don't show them?
If you asked me my greatest passion in life I would without any doubt give you one name, Jesus. Being a Christian is not a vague belief that God exists, it is a relationship, a love affair, a choice to follow Him. Those who know Him, truly know Him, will understand this. Once you catch just a glimpse of who He is, that's it, you're captivated, nothing else will ever compare. I don't read the Bible because I have to, I long to. I don't worship out of some ritualistic practice, I love to tell Him how great He is because of everything He has done for me. But the question we as parents need to keep in mind, isn't just do we love Jesus, it's do we allow our children to see how much we love Him?
Relationships are personal, just as myself & Alan need time alone, parts of our marriage are private and we need space to be just us, it's the same with us and God. Time alone with Him will always be an integral part of a relationship with Him, but just as I also want my children to see me and Alan holding hands, I want them to see us laughing, having fun, talking. I want them to see what a healthy marriage looks like, so they will have something to base their own marriage on in the future, I also want them to see what my relationship with Jesus looks like. This means letting them in, letting them really see what it means.
Yes we read the Bible to them, yes we pray with them, yes we talk about what we are praying for and who God is, but is this enough?
As I was reading through Deuteronomy this week it struck me how God placed such emphasis on teaching children. He wanted the children to be taught to honour Him, He wanted those who had not yet experienced His miraculous power and protection for themselves to be taught it, to hear about their parents' experience so that they might know who He really is. So that their expectations of Him would be based on the platform of what their parents had seen. They wouldn't have to learn it all again, they would know because they had been told.
'Gather the people together—men, women, children, and the foreigners living among you—so they can listen well, so they may learn to live in holy awe before God, your God, and diligently keep everything in this Revelation. And do this so that their children, who don’t yet know all this, will also listen and learn to live in holy awe before God, your God, for as long as you live on the land'
- Deuteronomy 31:12-13
We need to allow our kids to see the excitement of a relationship with Him. We need to show them it in all its wonder. When we pray with our children let's pour out our heart cries to Him as we would in private. When we worship and shout in unbelievable amazement of who He is, let's tell them why we are excited. When we decide to take a huge step of faith, which makes no sense to some, other than the fact that God has shown us to step out, let's share it with them. And let's tell them what He has done for us, the provision, the healing, the comfort, the answers to prayers time and time again, let's tell them! Let's tell them so that our relationship with Him and our incredible experiences would become the starting platform for theirs!
I'll always love to be in that room just me & Him but I also want my kids to see why I love those moments, so that one day, maybe I'll come and find them in that special place, pouring our their own heart cries in worship to Him!
How do you share your relationship with Jesus with your children? I'd love to hear from you, leave a comment below.
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