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-Are We Careful With Our Children?

Picture Frame Are We Careful With Our Children? “Be very careful, then, how you live – not as unwise but as wise.” — Ephesians 5:15 NIV


Oh, be careful little eyes, what you see, Oh, be careful little eyes, what you see,
For the Father up above, is looking down in love,
Oh be careful little eyes what you see. Oh, be careful little ears, what you hear, Oh, be careful little ears, what you hear,
For the Father up above, is looking down in love,
Oh be careful little ears what you hear. Oh, be careful little feet, where you go, Oh, be careful little feet, where you go,
For the Father up above, is looking down in love,
Oh be careful little feet where you go. Oh, be careful little hands, what you do, Oh, be careful little hands, what you do,
For the Father up above, is looking down in love,
Oh be careful little hands what you do. Oh, be careful little heart, whom you trust, Oh, be careful little heart, whom you trust,
For the Father up above, is looking down in love,
Oh be careful little heart, whom you trust.
The unknown writer of this children’s chorus beautifully summarizes how Christian parents should guide the upbringing of their little ones. Teaching that “the Father up above is looking down in love” is good advice and encouragement for both parents and children.

Be Careful Little Eyes
As parents we have a particular responsibility for what our children see in and around the home. We can’t control what they see in the world, but we must work at guarding their eyes. Regardless of age, children must be kept for the Lord. “The eye is the lamp of the body. If your eyes are good, your whole body will be full of light” (Mt. 6:22). When children watch us parents, what do they see? Are we Christlike? Does the husband love his wife as Christ loved the Church? Does the wife submit to her own husband as to the Lord? (Eph. 5:22-25). What television programs are we watching? What kinds of magazines are we reading? We must be careful not to get caught up in the “Do as I say, not as I do” syndrome.

What do we allow our children to watch on television? What do we allow them to read? Our responsibility is to teach our children to fix their eyes firmly on Jesus (Heb. 12:2). We must endeavor to let them see Christ in our own lives, in the Scriptures and in every circumstance and detail of life.

Be Careful Little Ears
The world is full of profanity and vulgarity. There are those in America who argue for the constitutional right of “freedom of speech” so they can then use profanity in their recordings, on television and radio. Undoubtedly, sooner or later our children will hear profanity and curse words in public places. Since the world doesn’t desire to protect children’s ears, we parents must do so!

The Christian home should be a place of protection from the daily vulgarities heard in schools, on the streets and in public places. In speaking about the day’s events, we parents need to “weed out” anything that is not Christlike, and focus on those things which are wholesome and those which turn their attention to Him and His people.

The home should be a place where the ears of children are protected and encouraged – a place where they learn to listen to God speaking to them. We also need to be available to guide our children as did an old leader in Israel named Eli. When he realized that the Lord was calling the young boy named Samuel, he said: “Go and lie down, and if He calls you, say, ‘Speak, Lord, for your servant is listening.’ So Samuel went and lay down in his place. The Lord came and stood there, calling as at the other times, ‘Samuel! Samuel!’ Then Samuel said, ‘Speak, for your servant is listening’” (1 Sam. 3:9).

Be Careful Little Feet
It is certain that we parents have to watch out for the “big feet” of our teenagers as we give them more liberty to go places. But those “big feet” started out as “little feet.” Our children should be trained to go to and be comfortable in church meetings, in Sunday school and in the homes of other Christians. We need to accompany small children to activities that are proper for them to be involved in. The Lord is faithful! Children whose “little feet” were directed to go to the proper places as youngsters will usually wind up in the proper places when they develop “big feet.”

Feet also speak of our walk or lifestyle. As we lead our youngsters in the Christian pathway, we do well to ponder these disciples as good examples: “When the two disciples heard him … they followed Jesus. Turning around, Jesus saw them following and asked, ‘What do you want?’ They said, ‘Teacher, where are You staying?” (Jn. 1:37-38).

Be Careful Little Hands
Hands speak of the things that occupy us. There are many hands in this world occupied with mischief. There are also many hands occupied with making money. Although children should be taught to diligently pursue both education and work, their primary occupation should be to serve the Lord and His people. Let their hands be used for the Lord like the lad in John’s gospel who gave his “five barley loaves and two small fish” to Jesus for the miracle of the feeding of “about five thousand” (Jn. 6:9-10).

Remember that the rod in Moses’ hand became “the rod of God in his hand” because he was occupied with the Lord (Ex. 4:2-3,20). As our children are taught to be occupied with the Lord, He can use their hands for His purposes.

Be Careful Little Heart
It might be easy to teach children not to trust strangers. It might also be easy to teach them not to trust unbelievers. But one of our tasks as Christian parents is to teach our children not to trust their own hearts. “The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can understand it? I, the Lord, search the heart and examine the mind, to reward a man according to his conduct, according to what his deeds deserve” (Jer. 17:9). Children must be taught to trust the Lord and depend on Him rather than the whims of their heart.

In Conclusion 
We parents have a great responsibility to shield our children from the world in a proper way, a way that coincides with God’s Word. We must put a scriptural “hedge” around them. Praise the Lord for the resources that He has given us to accomplish this task.

As we steer our children away from the sinful and negative influences of this world, we do well to consider the encouraging and guiding words of the apostle Paul: “Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable – if anything is excellent or praiseworthy – think about such things” (Phil. 4:8).

By Albert Stuart

The Value Of A Prayer Life

Having a close relationship with God doesn’t mean we will never have problems, but it does mean that when we do, He will be there to help us. He will calm the storms in our lives when things get rough. He will take the challenges we face and either transform them, or help us rise above them, or help us get through them. But these things don’t happen without prayer.

By Patrick Pakai
 

With permission to publish by: Sam Hadley, Grace & Truth, 210 Chestnut St., Danville, IL., USA. Website: www.gtpress.org

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