And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children.
Deuteronomy 6:6-7a ESV
As the song began to play, my first response was, “I remember this song!” After hearing it play on, something extraordinary happened. I found myself hearing it differently than I had heard it before. In my youth, I had interpreted the song as a reprimand to my parents that they needed to realize they could learn a thing or two from me, their child! But now as a mother, I listened to the words and heard an admonition to myself. “Lisa, teach your children well! The song I am referring to is Teach Your Children Well by Crosby, Stills and Nash.
The song for me at that moment was exactly as Ken Gire described in his book, Windows Of The Soul— God’s voice penetrating the raw material of our daily life. In this instance He was speaking through an old song from my youth and I was compelled to write a list of the most crucial things I need to teach my children before my time is up. Don’t get me wrong. I don’t think this was a premonition of any kind. Nor was it like those flippant morbid-type conversations, which I think most couples have. The “What if-I-die-before-you.-You better wait at least one year-before-you-remarry.-I-will-never-remarry” kind. This was different. I was being lovingly reminded that one of my most important purposes in life is to teach my children well!
Here are my top ten!
- You are loved. Jeremiah 31:3; John 3:16. I can’t emphasize this enough, even though I don’t say it as often as I should. You are my treasures! Nothing, absolutely nothing can separate you from the Love of God. No thought, no behavior, no sin! Nothing! Romans 8:38-39.
- Love the Lord with all your heart, soul and mind and strength. Deuteronomy 6:5; Matthew 22:37; Mark 12:30; Luke 10:27. Jesus said this was the GREATEST commandment. I know with EVERY fiber of my being, that if you do this, you will NEVER be disappointed! Romans 9:33 (NASB); Romans 10:11 (NASB); 1 Peter 2:6 (NASB); Psalm 22:5 (NASB).
- There is no other way to heaven but through Jesus Christ. John 14:6; Acts 4:12; John 3:16; Romans 6:23 (KJV); 1 Timothy 2:5-6. Jesus, Himself clearly stated this fact. Many will tell you otherwise but stand firm. 2 Corinthians 4:4; 1 Corinthians 2:14; Matthew 10:22.
- God’s Word, the Bible is limitless, priceless and timeless. Treasure it! It will guide, direct, comfort, encourage, admonish and enlighten you! 2 Timothy 3:16-17; 2 Peter 1:20-21; Matthew 5:18; Proverbs 30:5; Psalm 119:89, 12:6.
- Treat others as you want to be treated. Jesus said this sums up all the law! Enough said. Luke 6:31; Matthew 7:12; Leviticus 19:18, Mark 12:31; Matthew 22:39-40.
- Be a Giver not a Taker. There is no joy like the joy of giving and putting others before yourself–Jesus, Others, then You! Remember Success is helping others Succeed! Acts 20:35; 2 Corinthians 9:6-7; Luke 6:38; Proverbs 28:27; Malachi 3:10; Deuteronomy 16:17; Ecclesiastes 11:1 (NASB)
- Honesty is ALWAYS the best policy. Colossians 3:9; Acts 24:16; Ephesians 4:25; Proverbs 16:28 (ESV); Leviticus 19:11. Deuteronomy 6:24;
- You have a purpose and a destiny! Psalm 138:8 (ESV); Jeremiah 1:5; Jeremiah 29:11; Ephesians 2:10; 1 Peter 4:10.
- Do what is right even if it isn’t popular. Remember blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness. They will be satisfied! Matthew 5:6 (ESV); James 4:17; Romans 12:21; Matthew 5:10; Galatians 6:7; Romans 2:6-8.
- Dream Big because NOTHING is impossible with God! You have been gifted with talent, beauty and intelligence. There is NO limit to what you can accomplish with God! Philippians 4:13; Ephesians 3:20; Romans 8:31; Hebrews 13:6; Jeremiah 32:17; Matthew 19:26; Mark 9:23, 10:27; Luke 1:37 (ESV); Isaiah 41:10.
There are so many other things to teach about relationships, finances and life in general but this list is a pretty good foundation. (Please feel free to share any you may have on your list.) My daily prayer is that I not only teach these by my words but also by my actions. As the Apostle said in 3 John 1:4, I have no greater joy than to hear that my children are walking in the truth! LH