Today I am thrilled to introduce you to the love of my life, my husband Patrick Schwenk. God definitely blessed me with the man of my dreams. He is a loving husband, father and a Godly man who passionately follows Jesus with every ounce of his being.
Several years ago, my daughter said to me, “Dad, I am glad you are a pastor.” When I asked her why she said, “Because you teach us the Bible.” The truth is, every parent should be (and can be) a pastor to his or her children.
Through Moses, the LORD had given this responsibility to parents long ago in Deuteronomy 6:4-9. This passage is commonly referred to still today by the Jewish people as the Shema (from the Hebrew word to hear or listen). Notice what Moses instructs the Israelite parents to do in this passage:
4 Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one. 5 Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. 6 These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts. 7 Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. 8 Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. 9 Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates.
As Moses reminds the Israelite community of all that God had done, and what was still before them, he makes it clear that parents are to be teachers. Sadly, many parents have gotten distracted from this responsibility, delegated it to the church, or diminished the importance.
In a recent study published in the book, Unchristian, Christians were asked the following question:
What would you say are the two or three most important priorities for Christians to pursue in terms of their faith?
At the top of the list were values such as lifestyle, personal discipleship, evangelism, and worship. These are all good and biblical priorities. But what I found most alarming is that the priority to shape and build family faith fell at the very bottom of the list. Only one percent (1 %) of born-again Christians said that family faith, which includes discipling and shaping children, was a priority.
It is tempting for people to blame the church, culture, schools, or media. But we need to remember that the Christian movement was both birthed and multiplied during godless times, in godless places, and even under godless rulers. Among many other things, the home must be a place where we are passing on, by teaching, the faith we have.
Today, if you were to go into a Jewish home, you would notice a small wooden box (a mezuzah) hanging at a slight angle in each doorframe. Inside each mezuzah you would find a rolled piece of paper with the Shema (Deuteronomy 6) handwritten on it. It serves as a constant reminder when a parent goes in their house and when a parent goes out, to love God and to pass on as teachers, who God is and what He has done.
What a great responsibility and privilege we have as parents to instruct our children in God’s Word! One of the ways we have been doing this in our home is through a resource called The Dig for Kids. Several years ago I began writing The Dig to help our children learn the Bible in a simple and relational way. We are excited to begin making that resource available to other parents as well starting tomorrow August 1st! We hope that The Dig is another great resource for you and your children as you seek to raise them to be disciples of Jesus. Join us tomorrow here at The Better Mom and at The Dig for Kids to celebrate the launch of this new ebook series! We will have great giveaways and you will be able to purchase The Dig for $4.99 for your Kindle, Nook, or as a PDF.
For more information about The Dig, please visit www.thedigforkids.com!