January 19, 2022
Reflections – Consider the Children
How often do we consider the children? There was once a well-known theologian by the name of Karl Barth. On one occasion he gave a series of lectures at a prestigious gathering. During the question-and-answer session following his remarks, someone asked him how, after so many years of study, would he summarize the most important teaching of the Bible. Professor Barth thought a moment and then replied, “Jesus loves me this I know, for the Bible tells me so.” Simple but profound.
Songs Children Sing
So, what does that mean to us today, and how does it play into the raising of children? It is said that at the heart of every marriage there is God. And the product of most marriages is children. Parents are responsible for teaching their children about God. That is why so many of us learned at a young age the song, “Jesus loves me this I know, for the Bible tells me so.”
Another song children around the world learn is, “Jesus loves the little children, all the children of the world. Red and yellow, black and white, they are the same in his sight. Jesus loves the little children of the world.” I learned this one in Norwegian while living in Stavanger many years ago.
The Best Gift
The best gift we can give to our children is an introduction to God. In earlier times the father was expected to teach his trade to his children so they could make their way in the world. Today we have more sophisticated ways to train and more opportunities for children to pursue careers in life. However, the responsibility for teaching children about God has not changed. It goes all the way back to the Shema in Deuteronomy 6.
“Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God is one Lord and you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your might. And these words which I command you this day shall be upon your heart; and 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 up…”
We know that Jesus did consider the children to be important. Many years later after the writer in Deuteronomy penned those words, Jesus told his disciples to, “Let the children come to me.” Surely these commandments have not changed over the ensuing centuries. How is that working out for you?
A Godly Life
What does a Godly life look like, the sort of life we would want to model for our children?
One way to look at it is through the acronym, FIRST. These four letters stand for:
F – Finances. How do we handle our money? (Proverbs 13 says a lot about this.)
I – Interests. Are our interests in Godly things or things of the world?
R – Relationships. How do we treat others? Who do we choose for our friends?
S – Schedules. Do we choose the wise path? What gets priority in our lives?
T – Troubles. How do we handle the troubles of life when they come along?
Children are watching their parents (and their parents’ associates) all the time. They notice how their parents handle life. Parents, let us make our lives worth following, just as we say that we follow in the footsteps of Jesus!
Blessings and peace,
Source: Consider the Children is largely based on a Sermon at the MacArthur Park Church of Christ in San Antonio TX 2 January 2022.
Disclaimer statement: Please note that the opinions expressed herein are those of the Chaplain alone and are based on his personal understanding of scripture and how God works in our lives.
Read more Weekly Reflections: Chaplain’s Corner