“Mom, I can’t believe just because you do, or because you tell me to. I have to find out for myself. To know why I believe. Or not.”
It was one of the boldest statements my daughter had ever made as a teen. I could picture her throwing everything her dad and I had ever taught her out the window and walking away from her Christian roots … away from God. My heart threatened to shatter into a million pieces until I heard that still, small voice inside: Trust me. I’ve got this. And He did.
Letting our children go is never easy, whether we’re teaching them to ride a bike without training wheels, allowing them to drive the car for the first time, or sending them off to a college hundreds of miles away. But we must allow them to learn for themselves, even if it comes the hard way. Just like the mama bird pushes her babies out of the nest when it’s time, our children must learn to fly.
In this post-modern society, our children are taught to question everything and not to take anything at face value—or accept what their parents believe. They are encouraged to be independent freethinkers who are not afraid to rock the proverbial boat. This used to make me fearful for the future well-being of my children and grandchildren, but no longer. God makes promises in His Word and when we dare to believe Him, He is faithful to bring those things to pass. Our job is to love and pray.
My daughter had to find her own path … to become spiritually grounded on her own terms in God’s ways and in His Word. Today, if you ask what she believes and why, she can answer with assurance because her relationship with the Lord is strong. And it’s her own—not a shadow of her parents’ relationship.
If you have children, especially small ones, let them see your authentic Christian lifestyle. They learn much more from what we do than what we say. Talk to them about the Lord without being pushy or preachy. Pray for them daily. Pray with them. And commit them to God, trusting Him to manifest His glory, grace, and presence in their lives and to draw them close to Him.
What are some ways you can help ground your children in God’s ways?
(Photo courtesy of pixabay.)
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Andrea Merrell is an award-winning author and professional freelance editor. She is an associate editor with Christian Devotions Ministries and Iron Stream Media and was a finalist for the 2016 Editor of the Year Award at BRMCWC and the 2018 Excellence in Editing award by the Christian Editors Network. Andrea is a graduate of Christian Communicators and was a finalist in the 2015 USA Best Book Awards and the 2018 Selah Awards, as well as a semi-finalist in the 2018 ACFW Genesis contest. She has been published in numerous anthologies and online venues, teaches workshops on writing and editing, and is the co-founder and regular contributor to www.TheWriteEditing.com, a blog designed specifically for writers. Andrea is the author of Murder of a Manuscript, Praying for the Prodigal, and Marriage: Make It or Break It. Contact her at www.AndreaMerrell.com.