Don’t be confused. Planned times of intentionality that we as parents must use to teach and lead our children biblically are important. Whether that is a family devotion in your living room or a faith talk that you plan each week in a way that works for your family…teaching our kids spiritually doesn’t just happen. If you are walking the path of legacy milestones at Kingsland, discover where your children are on the path. Who is headed toward milestone 3? Anyone headed to milestone 6? Discover the core competencies your child should learn leading up to each milestone celebration. (listed for you at http://www.legacymilestones.com) Use the core competencies as truth benchmarks that you will intentionally teach your children leading them to the next milestone celebration.
There are however, moments along the way that just come up. I like to call these “God Moments.” These are the little moments that God provides before bed, or on the way to practice, or at the most inconvenient time for us as parents, that when captured allow us the great opportunity to lead spiritually in the moment. This is the “as you walk along the road, as you lie down and as you get up” of Deuteronomy 6.
This summer I was putting one of my daughters to bed. We finished our story, our prayers, and our songs and out of nowhere she burst into tears. If I am honest I have to say at first I was disappointed. I just wanted to head down stairs, pop some popcorn and sit on the couch with my wife and watch the newest episode of N.C.I.S. Instead I had a God moment on my hands. I asked my daughter what was wrong. She told me she had a bad feeling inside. I asked her why she felt bad. She began to tell me a story about a situation at school that happened 6 weeks earlier. She was mad at another student who treated her badly all year long. She decided to get back. She drenched herself in water at the water fountain and then told the teacher that the “mean girl” (her words not mine) poured water all over her. The “mean girl” got in trouble.
At first she was secretly glad. Over time, the Holy Spirit convicted her heart. In a moment prompted by God she said, “Daddy how do we fix this?” I got the incredible opportunity to talk with my daughter about true repentance (which happens to be a core competency of the milestone she is walking toward). We identified what she did that was wrong. I led her to pray that God would forgive her of her sin and show her how to make it right. The next day my wife dialed the number as my daughter called the infamous “mean girl” and the teacher to ask for forgiveness. She learned what it means to admit your sin and turn to God for forgiveness. She also learned the importance of going humbly to people you sin against and confessing with the hopes of reconciliation.
Funny thing. The “mean girl” is not a mean girl anymore and the teacher is my daughters’ favorite teacher ever. Recognize the God moments and leverage them to teach spiritual truth. Pray this day for wisdom to recognize the God Moments in the life of your child. Pray for wisdom to reinforce what God is already teaching your child along the way.