In a life full of worldly pursuits, money, fame, happiness, and stuff, when death comes, everything will be left behind. Not one successful person has ever been able to take their belongings with them into the hereafter. It’s a sad thing to have lived an entire life, and all pursuits are left to the wayside to be burned up.
Does that thought make you sad? You will leave everything you’ve ever strived for behind, when you die someday. You can’t take anything with you.
Or can you?
Think with me for a moment, that there is one thing you can take with you to Heaven. I know! It sounds weird, but it’s true. You have the opportunity to take those people that you love, with you to Heaven; and specifically, your children.
Now, of course, you can’t physically drag them to Heaven. Nor can you force your kids to desire Christ. However, if you take the time to teach your kids who God is, and the free gift of salvation that He offers us, then your kids may just join you in Heaven someday.
That thought excites me. And it terrifies me all at the same time. I mean, here I am, responsible for the hearts of my children. God has entrusted them to my husband and me to train and teach and disciple.
Though it scares me, it also excites me at the same time. As Christian parents we have a tremendous responsibility to train up our children in the wisdom and instruction of the Lord. (Ephesians 6:4)
The Bible gives us a warning about what could happen if we aren’t careful to raise godly children.
Let’s consider Joshua for a minute:
When I read the account of Joshua’s death. I’m amazed. Joshua was a godly man who served the Lord with his whole heart. His faith was evident. People knew what he stood for and he obediently led the Israelites into God’s Promised Land. There was no wondering with this guy. He was sold out and radical. His faith in God was the real, deal.
Yet, take a look at what happened:
Deuteronomy 6:6-10 (ESV)
When Joshua dismissed the people, the people of Israel went each to his inheritance to take possession of the land. And the people served the Lord all the days of Joshua, and all the days of the elders who outlived Joshua, who had seen all the great work that the Lord had done for Israel. And Joshua the son of Nun, the servant of the Lord, died at the age of 110 years. And they buried him within the boundaries of his inheritance in Timnath-heres, in the hill country of Ephraim, north of the mountain of Gaash. And all that generation also were gathered to their fathers. And there arose another generation after them who did not know the Lord or the work that he had done for Israel.
Look at the last part. It breaks my heart: An entire generation did not know the Lord or the work that he had done for Israel.
How could this be? I mean, it seems like Joshua’s life should have been evidence enough of his faith in God; that the next generation should have at least caught wind of the mighty works that God had done for them. And yet, a whole generation was devoid of faith in God once Joshua died.
Passing Your Faith to the Next Generation
Will what happened to Joshua’s descendants happen to yours? Or will you heed the warning and see for yourself that in order to raise godly children, kids who really take hold of the faith and continue to live it out years after you’re gone, you must be intentional.
Raising kids who own their faith does not just happen.
Read that again.
If you want your kids to teach their kids to teach their kids (and so on) about the goodness of God and the free gift of salvation that He provides for us, then you must pass on the baton of faith to your kids and you must start now! It’s not too early (and it’s also not too late) to tell your kids of God’s excellent mercy.
You must disciple your family.
If that thought scares you, or confuses you, fret not, my friend. Cultivating a Godly Home exists to walk you through the process of discipling your family. We start first with making sure your own faith is solid.
Then, we aim to strengthen your marriage and help you to put Christ at the center of your relationship with your spouse.
Finally, we teach you exactly how to disciple your family by providing you resources for teaching your kids how to grow in their faith. Then eventually, ultimately choosing a godly mate, so that your kids can, in turn, one day, raise godly kids of their own. It’s a beautiful cycle!
Discipling your family is not hard. Though I understand that it can be a bit intimidating. Discipling your kids is simply a commitment to living out your own faith in God in a sincere way, setting the example for your kids, and then teaching your kids to follow Christ in an intentional and tangible way.
Let’s break it down.
In our house, discipleship happens four ways.
Why is family worship so important? As Christians, it’s important for our kids to know that our faith stretches beyond our church attendance. It’s very tempting to worship God on Sundays and then put Him on a shelf along with our Bibles for the rest of the week.
Family worship draws our hearts to God on a daily basis. Not only does it strengthen our faith, but it creates a bond in the family unit that runs deep. During family worship, we read scripture together, praise God together, and we pray for and with each other. Family worship is one of the most important ways to cultivate a godly home.
Don’t let the thoughts of leading Family Worship intimidate you. It can be relaxed and informal or it can be structured. Tailor it to your family’s needs. There’s no right or wrong. This post*** will help give you some ideas for how to lead Family Worship.
As Christian parents, your number one priority should be to raise your children to love the Lord. Ultimately, you want to take your children with you to Heaven, remember? But you don’t just want to make sure your kids accept Christ as their Savior. You also want them to grow in Christlikeness.
Your role is to teach your kids to love God, to accept his free gift of salvation, to lovingly guide them as they grows in their faith, and to ultimately pass the baton of faith off to them, and prepare them to teach God’s love and faithfulness to the next generation, one day.
Raising a Godly generation starts now!
We must be diligent to teach our kids and never let what happened in Joshua’s day, happen in our generation. We have work to do, souls to save, and kids to disciple.
Let’s get going!