“You have a wonderful child.”
“Your child is so well-behaved.”
“Your children get along so well.”
“Your child did great on the field today.”
And the list goes on as to what we desire to hear from other parents and adults regarding our children. But is this what we as parents should be seeking after—the praise of man? What is important when it comes to teaching our children—good grades, behavior, athletic achievement? Psalm 78:1-8 is a great reminder in bringing our focus back to the importance of teaching our children what God desires for us to teach them.
“My people, hear my instruction; listen to what I say. I will declare wise sayings; I will speak mysteries from the past—things we have heard and known and that our fathers have passed down to us. We must not hide them from their children but must tell a future generation the praises of the LORD, His might, and the wonderful works He has performed. He established a testimony in Jacob and set up a law in Israel, which He commanded our fathers to teach to their children so that a future generation—children yet to be born—might know. They were to rise and tell their children so that they might put their confidence in God and not forget God’s works, but keep His commands. Then they would not be like their fathers, a stubborn and rebellious generation, a generation whose heart was not loyal and whose spirit was not faithful to God.”
Speak of the Past (Psalm 78:2b).
We all have a past and God tells us we are to share it. Yikes. I thought we were supposed to cover and hide our past from everyone so that we would appear perfect in man’s eyes. Wrong! God specifically tells us we must not hide the mysteries of the past especially from our children. Now these mysteries are not our self-proclaimed victories, achievements, accolades, or failures. While these are naturally shared within a family over time, the mysteries God desires to be heard from the mouths of parents to their children are the mysteries of the work of God which includes: praises of the LORD, His might, and the wonderful work He has performed in our lives through the good and the bad times (Psalm 78:4b). God did not set up His testimony in Jacob and His law in Israel just to give a set of rules and regulations to His people. Quite the opposite. God’s desire was for not only the next generation, but even the generation after to be able to know the praises of the LORD, His might, and the works He has performed (Psalm 78:5-6). But how do we do this? How do we ensure that our children know the praises of the LORD? How do we teach the mightiness of God? How do we share the wonderful work of God in our lives with children who seem to careless at times?
Rise and Tell Them (Psalm 78:6b).
Easier said than done right? How is it we can tell our children to clean their room, make their lunch, feed the dog, do their chores, all day long and not once mention Great is our Lord and worthy to be praised, Our God is a strong tower and we can run to Him, God helped me through a similar situation when I was your age? Oh how Satan loves to keep our eyes, hearts, minds, and spirit here on this earth! By doing so he prolongs the great gifts He has for our children through our obedience to rise and share with our children the mysteries of the past.
Blessings for our children (Psalm 78:7-8)
When we open up and share with our children, our children are given the opportunity to put their confidence in God. Not their confidence in themselves, the media, another guy or girl they are dating, but in God! They will not forget God’s works. They will keep His commands. They will not be stubborn and rebellious. They will not be unloyal and unfaithful to God. Isn’t this what we truly want for our children and yet we are unwilling to teach what is important…praises of our LORD, His might, the wonderful works He has performed.
My Heart’s Prayer: Lord, heavenly Father. Forgive me for having earthly eyes and not Your eyes. Help me to rise and praise Your mighty name with my children. Help me to help them see Your greatness and might. Help me to share the awesome work You have done in my life over the years. Help me to help them see the work that You have already done in their lives. Thank you for being a God who desires to see His children turn to Him and give blessings to them. I love you Lord. In Jesus Name, Amen.