When I decided to participate in this blog cruise, I thought long and hard about what I could write about. My favorite subject to teach.....hmmmm.
Would I write about teaching my children how to read? I have had the privilege to teach all 4 girls how to read, and they are all voracious readers now. It pleases me so much that they enjoy reading. I love the thrill in their young eyes when the letters and words start coming together and making sense to them. Surely that has to be my favorite subject!!
But no, wait....there is also history! History is my favorite subject to learn, personally, so it must be my favorite to teach also, right? I love learning from history and absorbing the lessons from the lives of others. Even now, when meeting new people, it fascinates me to hear their 'stories'. When I have an opportunity to read for leisure, my first choice is always a historical book, either biographies, historical fiction, or war stories. I love soaking in military history. There are so many interesting ways to teach and learn history - through books, movies, talking to people who lived through it, and visiting places where historical events took place! One of my favorite family trips was to Gettysburg where we toured the battlefield.
Over the years, I have learned to stop and take the time to listen to those heartfelt moments of questions or sharing from my children. When they were younger, often I was so caught up in life - making sure the food was ready, the clothes were clean, the chores were done, etc. that I confess that I missed out on some of these moments. God has slowed me down quite a bit, and helped to focus my attention on what is really important.... He has helped me, as a mom, to find that "one thing that is needful" and be more of a Mary, not so much a Martha, in my service. I have been able to learn a little, and see those precious moments for what they really are....molding and teaching a life and bestowing my values into the hearts of my children.
As my children grow up, I am enjoying more and more the times when we just sit and talk, allowing me to get a glimpse into their heart and mind. I enjoy watching my husband share ministry with the girls, and pouring his heart for others into our children. I have watched the children embrace those values and that servant attitude and really develop some of their own personal convictions because of it. Some of my favorite recent memories are the times when the two teenagers in the family want to stay up late just to chat with mom and dad on the couch. In the uninterrupted quiet at night, we have had the privilege to share some pretty deep and heartfelt conversations about life, and about how God has worked, and what our perspective is on many things - anything from current events to a verse they memorized to what the future may hold.
I truly believe God has put a great responsibility on parents to reach their child's heart. Most parents can be a good provider. They can work hard and make sure there is food on the table, clothes, a warm house, and even some of the latest toys and hobbies. But it takes a special parent to reach the heart, and see that the emotional needs are met as well. I want to be that parent. One way to do that is to look for those little moments and take the opportunities to have meaningful conversations with the children. Ask them what they think about things, and most importantly, really listen with your whole heart to their answers. Look for ways you can give advice, share your heart, and ask God to give you wisdom to reach their heart.
When you have special moments with the Lord in your devotions, or God speaks to you through a message, or God answers a prayer, be sure to share those experiences with your children. Rehearse in their ears all the good things God has done for you, to whet the appetite of your children and have them desire a walk with God that is even better than yours! Your children will be excited about the things that you are excited about. Take advantage of that by pouring your heart into them and preparing them for life!
Deuteronomy 4:9 "Only take heed to thyself, and keep thy soul diligently, lest thou forget the things which thine eyes have seen, and lest they depart from thy heart all the days of thy life: but teach them thy sons, and thy sons' sons;"
Deuteronomy 6:7 "And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up."
This post is linked to the Schoolhouse Review Crew Blog Cruise