In my last post I listed one of my indicators of success in life is to pass my faith on to my children. Specifically, I wrote, “I want to see our children, Tabitha and Elijah, launched into the world fully equipped as Kingdom livers who are deeply in love with Jesus.”
I certainly know that ultimately the choice for who Tabitha and Elijah place their faith in relies completely with them. However, I also believe that we as parents are charged with helping them determine who to place their faith in, processing life experiences that will help them understand their faith, and living in such a manner that allows them to imitate our faith.
In Deuteronomy 11:18-20 we are instructed to: Commit yourselves wholeheartedly to these words of mine. Tie them to your hands and wear them on your forehead as reminders. teach them to your children. Talk about them when you are at home and when you are on the road, when you are going to bed and when you are getting up. Write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.
So, here are a few things that Julie and I are committed to doing to fully equip our children as Kingdom livers who are deeply in love with Jesus.
*We have an intentional plan of reading the Bible. We use age appropriate versions and try to read together on a regular basis.
*We memorize Bible verses together.
*We serve together. Our desire is to offer a specific serving opportunity once a month. So, we will serve children living in a nearby city, feed the homeless at a local shelter, visit the aging in an assisted living center, take cookies to the widow living down the road, etc.
*My goal is, beginning at age eleven, to travel with each of them on a global “Jesus experience” every other year. I want them to see extreme poverty firsthand, to meet the Compassion children we sponsor, to have their heart broken the way God’s heart breaks. Tabitha has already been to Peru and Ecuador!
*I would love to take each of them to Israel some time during their high school years. I want them to walk where Jesus walked, to see the places the Bible stories we have read together actually took place.
*We will live in community on mission with other followers of Jesus. We know that parenting is difficult these days. The more Jesus-followers we can have pouring into the lives of our kids the better.
*We will model the authentic Jesus life. I want to be able to say to Tabitha and Elijah, “Imitate me as I imitate Jesus.” The same Greg Nettle they see on the platform in our weekly church gatherings is the same daddy they see living with them at home.
It would be great to hear the ideas and practices you have for passing your faith to your children!