Training A Child In The Way He Should Go

Getting “The cart before the horse” is such a vivid picture of the backwards way of trying to do things. It just simply won’t work. Yet the wisdom of man is always trying in vain to deliver the goods in just that fashion. We’ve been told that the way to build our children’s self esteem is by telling them how wonderful they are (even when they’re bad), making them feel like winners (even when they lose), and always rewarding them (even when they are lazy). The result is that we have raised a generation of self-absorbed brats with an entitlement mentality. Truth is, self esteem is the by-product of good decisions, hard work, and showing a genuine interest in others. Teach your children by example, precept, and correction to choose right over wrong, to respect others (especially authority), and to work hard. Then, they will grow up feeling good about themselves. Parenting is hard work. It will keep you on your knees. It’s a battle against the flesh. Many mistakes will be made along the way. But, if we take the easy way out, you can be sure that their Adamic nature will not only turn the cart over, it will kill the horse.

Now, all that being true, there is but one thing that really matters in the end. Has the Lord been pleased to save my child? Do they know Christ? Here is where our God given responsibility must not falter. If the Lord is pleased to save our children He will use the preaching of the gospel to do it. There is no greater thing we can do for our children than to have them in public worship. May God give us the grace to make this THE priority in our homes. Again, some get the cart before the horse. They wait for the child to want to come. Remember, faith comes by hearing, not hearing by faith. Always have them where they can hear and pray the Lord will give them ears to hear.

G. Elmquist

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