Parents must teach their children God’s instructions

Published 8:15 am Friday, February 10, 2023

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From the writings of the Rev. Billy Graham

Dear Rev. Graham: I’m going to become a mother for the first time. I’m excited and afraid all at the same time. I want to be sure that I instill in my child the most important aspects of life. I want to believe God will help me do this. — Y.M.

Dear Y.M.: Expectant mothers often imagine that when their baby arrives it will be fun and exciting, not stopping to consider the sleepless nights and hard work. Children need constant care if they are to survive. Much of what we do as parents — feeding our children, taking them to the doctor, protecting them, and warning them about dangers — we do in order to help them survive the perils of life.
Parental responsibility doesn’t stop with providing for children’s physical needs. They may grow into healthy young men and women — but if that’s all they become, we have failed to prepare them for life. More than that, we have failed to help them become the individuals God wants them to be. God gives parents children to help them develop mentally and emotionally. Without this, they will enter adulthood ill prepared and doomed to failure.
Children may become adults physically, mentally, and emotionally — but if they have no moral and spiritual foundations, they will never know lasting stability. If children are raised never being taught right and wrong or never hearing God’s message of salvation, their souls will be impoverished. Spiritual character doesn’t just happen. We cannot make our children believe as we do, but we can point them to Christ and to His Word. The Bible tells parents to teach their children God’s instructions and show them the way to live and behave (see Exodus 18:20). Most of all, the Bible tells us to ask for God’s guidance and He will supply.
(This column is based on the words and writings of the late Rev. Billy Graham.)

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