As mothers, our first responsibility, and God’s #1 commandment to parents, is to love God supremely. We’re to live and teach God’s Word to our children day by day, moment by moment.
“Love the Lord your God with all your heart….” (Matthew 22:37).
Our First Responsibility
As mothers, our #1 responsibility is to love the Lord our God with all our heart, soul and might. Jesus crowned all the commandments with this one. And this is God’s first commandment for parents in Deuteronomy 6:5.
“Jesus replied: ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ “This is the first and greatest commandment” (Matthew 22:37-38).
“Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up” (Deuteronomy 6:5-7).
We will not be perfect parents. There will always be more we could have done. But if our treasure is in God all along the way, we will constantly look to Him for leadership.
“For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also” (Matthew 6:21).
We are to love the Lord supremely, and keep obedience to God foremost in our hearts. We are to teach our children that God is to be #1 in their lives also. We are to talk about obedience to God’s precepts throughout the day at every opportunity. God is to be so much a part of our lives that our love for him flows naturally into conversation and action.
He knows what he has planned for each child. He knows we have already missed the mark of his perfect plan. That’s why he sent the Savior to redeem those who will look to Him.
Only he knows the way from where our children are to where he wants them to be. We may lead them in general terms, but only God knows how to get there from here. The Holy Spirit will impress upon us that little extra we are to do at this moment to help that individual son or daughter to see God more clearly.
We are to teach our children the Word of God. We are to read it, talk about it, love it, honor it, reverence it, obey it, memorize it, and treasure it. We should tell our children often that, while we may not have many earthly riches to give them, we give them a gift far greater than all the riches in the world, our most valued treasure, the Word of God.
What an inheritance we give them! And we have this promise: Every nugget from God’s Word that we put into our children’s minds and hearts will not return void, but will accomplish God’s purpose in their lives.
“So is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it” (Isaiah 55:11).
What a promise!
Day by Day
The Bible says we are to teach our children little by little as we go through the years with them. Little by little, year by year, day by day, moment by moment. We may only have moments that are ours to teach our children God’s precepts. But let us make those moments count.
“Who is it he is trying to teach? To whom is he explaining his message? To children weaned from their milk, to those just taken from the breast? For it is: Do and do, do and do, rule on rule, rule on rule ; a little here, a little there” (Isaiah 28:9-10, NIV).
“For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little” (Isaiah 28:10, KJV).
God Will Do It
The God who fed a multitude with a little boy’s lunch (John 6:8-13) will multiply our moments also if we do the best we can to raise our children for God in the moments he gives us!
Were it up to us to make sure our children did not depart from the training we give them, what hope would there be? But God is the one who has called us to train them in the way they should go. And God is the one who has promised that they will not depart from our training. And God is the one who is faithful. God will ever remind them of the training we’ve woven into their lives.
The further they stray, the more he will call to mind what we’ve taught them about him. God will never let them go.
“The one who calls you is faithful and he will do it.” (1 Thessalonians 5:24).
What a mighty God we serve!
Give God the #1 place in your life today. Begin to teach your children God’s principles little by little, day by day, as you go through everyday life with them. Ask God to help you and trust him to guide each step of the way.
Thought to Remember
The further our children stray, the more God will call to mind what we’ve taught them about him. God will never let them go.
Questions for Discussion
- What is God’s #1 commandment for parents?
- How do our shortcomings as parents affect God’s promises?
- How do we know the way each individual child should go?
- What is the most important thing we are to teach our children?
- How are we to train our children?
- Whose responsibility is it to make sure our children do not depart from the Scriptural training we provide?
- Where can we get the wisdom we need to train our children?
Scripture taken from New International Version unless otherwise noted