“I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth” (3 John 1:4).
It’s a beautiful, but cold day and I am comforted by thoughts of my family. Just as God has no greater joy than to see us walk in truth, we feel the same way about our children and grandchildren. It’s never too late to start teaching by example.
Young children are the easiest place to start. Toddlers mimic the behaviors they are around and the words they hear. Hold hands and pray at meals, read them bible stories, take them to church, and sing children’s hymns. They may forget what you looked like when you are gone, but they will always remember what you taught them.
Older children and teenagers can be a little more challenging. It is perfect if you can find them a youth group that is accepting. These groups take trips, go to contemporary Christian concerts, play sports and other games together, while learning Christian life and lessons. The leaders of the groups can also be Christian advisers your children and grandchildren can confide in and seek advise from. While they are spending time with youth groups, reinforce Christian values in your home.
Adult children are even more challenging. If you have raised your family in a Christian home, chances are they are going to venture out from what you have taught them to make their own decisions about beliefs. Most of the time they will return to their childhood teachings. If not or they were not taught at a young age, take a different approach. Continue to live by example and try to not press the issue, but when the opportunity presents itself or when asked for advice, casually give helpful examples of how God has made a difference for you.
Finally, you can be an example for your parents. When your parents see how God is working in your life, they will start paying attention, and so will others. No one is perfect all the time, but try to live by example and at all times be thankful for all your blessings. In all the cases above pray for God’s help and trust him for his timing is perfect.
Today, people and especially children are influenced by what society says is right. Join me in lovingly teaching by example. God bless you.