Parents, every day you’re passing on a legacy to your children.
What are you leaving them?
Jean and I have two teenage boys at home, and we think a lot about how we can instill them with the biblical values we know will carry them through their lives.
There are countless ways moms and dads can pass their faith on to their children, a lot of them based on the family’s schedule and each member’s unique personality. But at the core of them all is you – the parent.
Studies consistently show that the most powerful influence in a child’s life is mom and dad, followed by grandparents. The church ranks a couple of notches down the list. That doesn’t negate the significance of your child’s youth group, of course, it just reaffirms that parents have always been the primary influence in their children’s lives.
But a lot of parents contact us here at Focus saying they don’t feel confident that they know how to pass a legacy on to the next generation.
On our radio program today, we’ll be discussing a few ideas that I think will give you some practical direction and encouragement in this area.
It starts with Scripture. Deuteronomy 11:19 tells us how to expose our children to God’s Word and His principles. It says, “You shall teach them to your children, talking of them when you are sitting in your house, and when you are walking by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise.”
Some families prefer formal times of Scripture reading and devotion. My wife enjoys structured times like that, and my boys respond pretty well to them, too. I prefer something a little more loose. I drive the boys to school every day, and we have chats in the car together about something we’ve read in the Bible.
The point is, however you go about life, bring the presence of God into it.
A lot of parents will be interested in our conversation about creating rites of passage throughout their children’s lives. We’ll discuss how to plan something meaningful once a year – a ceremony, some sort of special, symbolic experience – that marks key moments in the child’s life. It can be around a birthday, the beginning or end of a school year, or other moments that honor their growth as a person and as a believer in Jesus Christ.
I hope you’ll join us today for “Creating Spiritual Rites of Passage for Your Children” on your local radio station. Or listen at your convenience online or via our free, downloadable mobile phone app.
Our guest will be Jim Burns, a popular youth and family expert. He’s president of HomeWord and executive director of the HomeWord Center for Youth and Family at Azusa Pacific University.