It was so beautiful so see the young couple in church yesterday dedicating their two beautiful children to God. When Pastor was dedicating them, he said two things that profoundly caught my attention. He said that he knew this couple was serious about God because one of the first things they wanted to give to God after coming into church was their children. Secondly, he talked about a child makes their decision as to what type of dedication they are going to have to God by about the age of 11. I have found this to be so true. Yes, young people can come into church but truly we see those who are dedicating themselves to ministry begin those principles in their life at an early age. How many times have we heard a missionary or pastor say that God began to move on them on their childhood.
I thought back to people in my life and those who went on to do incredible things of God in most cases are those who were seeking God in their childhood years. This really causes me to look at what I'm establishing in my children and the expectations that I have of them. My parents expected that I would be in church and would be involved in every aspect of the church. It was never a choice until we reached adulthood (not even sure they would have accepted it then...ha). Many of you know that I work in education and have worked at all levels, teaching, adminstration, etc, for many years. Not once in that time have I ever had a parent tell me..."We leave it to our children if they want to attend school or not. We leave it up to our children if they want to be involved in class. We leave it up to our children if they want to do their homework. We leave it up to our children if they want to learn math in third grade. We leave it up to our children if they want to listen to the teacher." No, you get the idea. But, I have had several parents of kids 8-11 tell me, "I don't want to force the things of God on my child because I want them to make their own choices." C'mon now. That's not the responsibility God gave us. My main purpose in life is to pour everything into and mold three little Duvall children in my household so they will have the necessary tools to be powerful ministers. I don't want them trying to find out who God is at age 17. This is not the blog I had intended to write this week but feel impressed to pull the cover off the line the world tries to give us. We aren't here to be spectators in the spiritual development of our children but we are here to keep them on the path and give them a nudge when they are headed wrongly. Think of Hannah...she expected Samuel to serve. The Bible says in Joshua 24:15 (NIV), “But if serving the LORD seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your forefathers served beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the LORD.” Joshua made a choice to serve the Lord. But notice what he said, “But as for me and my household, we will serve the LORD.” First of all, he made that choice for himself, and as a result, he made a choice that affected his household. When we make a decision to follow Jesus, it affects all those who are in our household. Joshua said, “We will serve the Lord.” He made a quality decision that effected his eternal destination, and that of the members of his household.
This is not a new principle but are you making decisions with your children that have an underlying determination that they will serve the Lord or are you not making decisions for them because you have bought into the psychobabble of this world that says, "Let them find their own way."
Love all of you so much! Don't forget the Children's Prayer Revival. :)