There are so many important things we as moms feel the need to teach our children. I feel a heavy weight as a mom to be sure that my children are equipped for the lives that they have ahead of them. I want them to be responsible. To be a good spouse. To be good parents. Employees or Employers. However, today, as we read Deuteronomy 6:1-9, we see the most important thing we could ever teach our children – how to love God.
“Now this is the commandment—the statutes and the rules—that the LORD your God commanded me to teach you, that you may do them in the land to which you are going over, to possess it, that you may fear the LORD your God, you and your son and your son’s son, by keeping all his statutes and his commandments, which I command you, all the days of your life, and that your days may be long. Hear therefore, O Israel, and be careful to do them, that it may go well with you, and that you may multiply greatly, as the LORD, the God of your fathers, has promised you, in a land flowing with milk and honey. “Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one. You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates. (Deuteronomy 6:1-9 ESV)
It is first important to note some context of the book of Deuteronomy before we dive into the practical uses of today. The book of Deuteronomy is the book of the law of love. I believe these verses give us the whole theme of the book. We are to love God – and that is what Moses is going to teach the children of Isreal, and what he commands them to pass on to their children- and what I think we need to pass on to ours. Not to just obey for the sake of being obedient- but to teach the commandments and statues of God – the Word of God- out of our love for the Lord. Not as robots, who have been programmed with a list of do’s and don’ts, but a heart of obedience out of love. We love God the right way when we obey the things we read in His Word out of a loving heart for Him.
When we think on to the New Testament, we know that this what a thought process that Jesus felt needed to pass from the old covenant of the Old Testament to the new covenant of the New Testament. Jesus said that loving God with every bit of us, just like Deuteronomy says, was the greatest commandment. When we love God right, we can do the second greatest commandment, of loving others right. (Matthew 22:37-39 and Leviticus 19:18). When we struggle with our relationship with God, undoubtedly, our relationships with others will struggle too.
As mothers, it is part of our job to disciple our children in loving God. There are some practical ways we can do this- and many of them are found right here in this passage!
1) Make YOUR relationship with God your Number One Priority- Loving God must be authentic. It can’t be taught unless the lesson is applied every day in your own life. Keeping yourself in right relationship with God, and loving Him with all your heart, mind, soul, strength is the only way that you can teach it to them. It must be shown. They will be able to tell if it isn’t authentic and real in your life. Is it Mama? Do your kids see you with your Bible open – or only with a cell phone or screen in front of your face? Do they hear your prayers – or only grace at the table? Live your love and faith before them, and watch them grow in love and faith right before your eyes!
2) Talk about it! I have heard so many people say that their relationship with God is a private thing- and it wasn’t meant to be! Talk to your kids about your relationship with God. Talk to them about THEIR relationship with God. Don’t just assume they read and pray behind closed doors- get in there and find out if it is going on. Some ways that we do this practically in our home! Stay tuned next week as we talk more practically about how we get in and talk about our kids relationships with God.
3) Make God A Part of ALL day- Don’t just have God be a part of your meal time prayers. Or night time prayers. Or even family devotionals. Every moment of the day is an opportunity to talk about God. Make God a part of every part of every day.
4) Memorize God’s Word. When we memorize God’s Word, we have it with us all the time. This makes it easier to talk about it, and to use it in times when temptation comes, when we are sad, or when we are scared. God wants to be with us in each of those places!
5) Guard Your Gates- You have gates- all over your house and your body. Any entrance into your home or your body (eyes, ears, mouth, touch, smell) can either bring your closer to God, or farther away from him. Make sure you are guarding these gates, and using the words you memorize from God’s Word, you will keep short sin accounts with God. Keeping short sin accounts will mean that you are in right relationship with Him. It is important that we teach this idea to our children as well.
There is so much in this passage, that I hope you will join me next week, as we dive into some of the practical “how-to”s of Teaching them Diligently.
*This series has been made into a book! You can get our pdf copy on the Store page! There is more to the book than what you find in the articles- so get yours today!*
Worshiping With My Life,