“Teach them to your children, talking about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up” (Deuteronomy 11:19).
What does the word “home” signify to you? It makes me imagine children playing or doing their homework and waiting for their mother to finish cooking dinner. I picture a happy family sharing a meal together and talking about the events of their day. Later, the father and mother chat over their after-dinner coffee.
Unfortunately, we too often get a scene like this instead:
Daddy comes home after the children are in bed.
Mealtimes are spent watching TV.
You only have your family together for a short time. Don’t waste these precious years! Too frequently, the TV and radio keep us from talking to each other. They make our conversations for us. Video games cause people to interact with the computer instead of each other.
Someday soon, your children will have families of their own. They won’t always be able to spend time with you. Right now, while they are still small, is an ideal time to build relationships.
When we think of spending time with our children, we might think only of spending money or going places. I don’t think those things are necessary at all. Why not simply read a book together? Why not play guessing games while you dry the dishes? Enjoy the everyday times together. Talk to the kids about how you tried to follow Jesus today. Explain to them why you make the decisions you do.
Someday, you will no longer be in the parenting role. Will you have enough of a relationship to be friends with your children?
Kimberly Snider is a missionary to the Philippines.
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Copyright (c) 2005 Women’s Ministries of the Assemblies of God.