I Am The Primary Discipler, Now What Should I Say To Disciple Them?
The Following Blog Post is By Kati Berreth, Redeemer Kids Director
And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. (Deuteronomy 6:6-7 ESV)
I have used the above verses for the past two blog posts because these verses affirm that we are in fact the primary disciplers in our homes and that because of this we are called to disciple our kids daily, regularly, all the time. Yet, these verses are taken out of a larger chunk of scripture that is necessary for us to look at if we are to figure out what we are to actually say to our kids when we disciple them.
“Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one. You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates. (Deuteronomy 6:4-9 ESV)
There is one God
So how do these verses help us know what to say to our kids? Look at the beginning of verse 4 - “The LORD our God, the LORD is one.” One of the most important things we can tell our kids is that there is only one God. If your two-year- old can hold up 1 finger, then teach him or her to say “1 God” and repeat that over and over again. It can be just that easy.
Love the Lord
The next part of verse 4 is also crucial in helping us know that we should say to our kids but it is more about our relationship first then about what we should say. We need to love the LORD (our) God with all (our) heart(s) and with all (our) soul(s) and with all (our) might. The more we spend time in His word and in prayer with Him, the more we will want to share what we are learning with our kids.
Today, as I was prepping the curriculum for Sunday in Redeemer Kids, I was overwhelmed by reading about how Jacob literally “held on to God” as he waited to hear back from his brother Esau whom he had tricked and stolen their father’s blessing from 20 years prior. Think back to the last time you were anxiously awaiting news or wrestling with God during the night. Did you cling on to Him and His promises that He has spoken to you in His word and through your prayers? Spending time in the story of Jacob today gave me a new perspective and a new understand of what my relationship could be and should be like with God. I am to love the Lord with everything in me and I get to share this new insight tonight during our devotional time.
But what if you aren’t there yet? What if you don’t love the Lord currently? This is where the story of Jacob can speak to that as well. He clung on to God because the safety of his life and his family’s life was in the hand of the brother he had treated so horribly. All Jacob could do during this time was cling on to the knowledge that God had promised to bless his family beyond anything he could imagine - and we get to cling on to God’s promises as well.
John 3:16 tells us that “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life.” God loves us! He loves us so much that He sent His own son as the sacrifice for our sins so that we too could receive His blessing, if we believe, like Jacob. So we can rejoice that even our sin of not loving Him enough or rightly has been forgiven because of Jesus’ perfect life, death, burial, and resurrection - defeating Satan, sin, and death.
Know the Lord
And the last section of the scripture passage then goes into this idea because we can’t love God unless we know Him, but these verses “You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates” are telling us specifically how important it is to know God’s commandments. These verses tell us to put them everywhere so that we never forget them. And although we could take these as literally as the Israelites did by wearing head bands with boxes on them containing the scriptures or special bracelets or even bring this idea into our current trend of getting tattoos, I would simply encourage you to know the words of God and His commandments by spending time in the Bible. Read it daily, meditate on it, memorize it, read it to your kids, listen to sermons about it, read commentaries about it. By knowing Him and spending time with Him, your love for Him will grow and that affection will pour out of you and into your kids.