Daily Devotion

November 19: The Principles of Wisdom

Proverbs 1:8  My son, hear the instruction of thy father, and forsake not the law of thy mother: 

If the parent is to train a child to behave properly, then what are parents to teach? We live in a day when evil is called good and that which is good is called evil. Light and darkness have been reversed. You are admonished to “… not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.” No matter what society and the culture is teaching children today, we must train our children how to deal with the issues of life. We must teach them according to the Scriptures.

The first thing you need to teach your children is to be respectful of spiritual things. If they do not respect the things of God and respect His Word then you cannot properly teach them godly things. Teaching them to be obedient to the commandments and the principles of God’s Word will teach them obedience to rules and regulations in all of their life.

We must teach them to respect authority. God has placed certain ordained authorities in our life to guide us and direct us in our daily life. There is the authority of Christ our Saviour, of His Holy Spirit to teach and instruct us in the things of God, the Word of God to give us basic instructions for living in this world, and the men of God whom God has called and ordained to deliver God’s spiritual necessities to His people. God has given civil authority and these should be respected and obeyed as long as they do not conflict with the Word of God.  

Through the Word we can teach them to have self-control over anger, emotions, and words. This control comes from within the heart and the thought processes. The heart must be right if the child is to have proper thoughts, and thus to control words, actions, and decisions. This will lead them to successfully accept and receive instruction and correction with the right heart.

The doctrine of Christ our Saviour is a doctrine of love for God and for others; loving our neighbor as our self. We are to love the brethren as well as our enemies. Your children will treat others with respect and kindness and will learn to sacrifice and be helpful when they know Christ and are taught the things of Christ in love.

The doctrine of Christ will also teach your child how to be honest knowing that God already knows all about them. They can learn a good work ethic because we are taught in the Bible to do our work for others as if we were doing it for the Lord Himself. This will teach them to be respectful of schedules; to be on time every time. They will learn to do a job right the first time; to give their very best first and foremost.

These truths are the godly principles that are based upon God’s Word. They are basic good behavior even though the world does not teach these things today. You are responsible to teach these things to your child so that they can be the children of their Father in Heaven. They will have a better life by having godly teaching in their lives, not by having every new thing that comes along.

Teach them to respect the things of God – His authority and His Word; to be obedient to rules and commands; to respect authority; to practice self-control; to receive correction well; to love, respect, and help others; to be honest; to practice a good work ethic; to respect schedules; and to always be honest with God and with others. Parents, grandparents, church leaders, and mentors are all responsible to model these principles before others. Are you living a proper godly example before others? -Preacher

November 16: The Persuasion of Wisdom

Proverbs 1:8-9  My son, hear the instruction of thy father, and forsake not the law of thy mother:  For they shall be an ornament of grace unto thy head, and chains about thy neck.

The instruction of the father refers to the chastening, the reproof, correction, and instruction given by a father. This is something that is lacking in America today. Too many today do not have godly fathers and too many do not have a father figure in their life at all.

The instruction of a father is to train the child in the issues of life. You have to teach them how to live godly by example first. You may tell your children to do what you say and not what you do, but your child will do as they see you doing. Therefore you must set the proper example.

The greatest example to set for a child is for a parent to know Christ as their Saviour and to teach the children of Christ every day; to teach them about salvation through Christ and the consequences of not having Christ. Then you can teach them the ways of Christ and help them to build upon the principles of God’s love. The doctrine of Christ is a doctrine of loving God and loving others. It teaches them to put others before self and therefore teaches them to behave well.

A parent does not have to be harsh all the time to get results in training their children. If a parent shouts at their children all the time when they misbehave then the child will also shout when they do not get their way. Parents would do well to calmly and softly talk to their kids when they misbehave and then follow through with the proper punishment if they continue to misbehave. This teaches the child self-control and lets them know that the parent means what they say. Cooler heads will always prevail.

But the instruction must be given before discipline can be instilled. You must teach them what is right and what is expected of them. You must then teach them what is wrong and what to expect if they do wrong. The punishment must fit the crime, so to speak, but they must first be taught, instructed, and trained.

As Christians we do not automatically spank a child the first time they get out of line. There must be mild but sincere judgment and punishment for the first offence. They must be taught, and you must ensure that they understand, that the punishment level will intensify with each time they continue to disobey. However, it is not the severity of punishment that acts as a deterrent; it is its inevitability that punishment will come. 

Therefore as a parent you cannot afford to make idle threats either. If you tell your child that you are going to give a certain punishment for disobeying, then that punishment must be given for that infraction. To do otherwise is to teach them that there is no real consequence for doing wrong.

You must always show them that you love and care for them after you have punished them. They must understand that they are loved, even when they have to be punished for doing wrong. It does not do well to punish and child and then leave them feeling rejected and broken. When punishment is done, you must love on them.

The ornament of grace and the chains of beauty are the blessings that will come to them and to others as self-discipline and obedience will make them pleasant to get along with. But it all starts with the parent being right with God and teaching the ways of God in the love of Christ. -Preacher