“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.” Deuteronomy 6:7
Abraham had a nephew called Lot who succeeded in business, but lost his family. How come? Because:
(a) he had the wrong emphasis – he placed material success above spiritual success;
(b) he had the wrong environment – he thought his children could live in Sodom and not be affected by it;
(c) he had the wrong expectation – he thought he could change his surroundings by compromising with them;
(d) he set the wrong example – he thought his family would follow his instructions; instead they followed his lifestyle;
(e) he had the wrong relationships – he didn’t realize until it was too late, how much Sodom had influenced his family (See Ge 19:4-5).
If you think you can live by the world’s rules and expect your children to follow God’s, you’re kidding yourself. Instead of preaching about the shoes you want your children to fill, walk in them! Lead by example. Outside of your influence as a parent, the four greatest influences in your child’s life are their peers, the internet, media and music. And all four are either working for you or against you. You say, “But I’m really busy right now.” Get un-busy! Rethink your priorities.
Your child’s character is being molded each day; the question is, by whom? God’s Word clearly states that these six things constitute your job description as a parent: (1) Instruct them (See Dt 6:6-7). (2) Train them (See Prov 22:6). (3) Provide for them (See 2Co 12:14). (4) Nurture them (See Eph 6:4). (5) Discipline them (See 1Ti 3:4). (6) Love them (See Tit 2:4).
The truth is, you have no greater responsibility!