January 6
Training in Godliness 

Deuteronomy 4:9-10

Our desire as Christian parents is to help our children mature into godly men and women. We want them to believe that God has a plan for them and that they are accountable to Him.

I remember teaching my children from a young age about these important truths, because I wanted biblical principles to shape their thinking and their choices. After explaining about God's will, I told them they were accountable to the Lord for their behavior—as well as to their mother and me. If kids believe their only accountability is to parents, then when they are apart from Mom and Dad, they are likely to think that they don't have to answer to anyone.

When my children objected to my decisions, I taught them to speak to their heavenly Father about it. Over time, they developed the habit of talking things over with Him. This training became very important in their teenage years. Instead of giving a quick no to some of their requests, I said, "Find out what God wants you to do. Whatever you two agree on, I will accept." I knew this was risky, but I had to trust the Lord and give my children the opportunity to practice what I had been teaching them—that they are accountable to God.

Training in godliness begins before children establish a personal relationship with Christ. We should continue the process by modeling righteousness all through life. Kids need to know about the Lord's plan for them and their accountability to Him. They also need parents who speak their name to God.

For more biblical teaching and resources from Dr. Charles Stanley, please visit www.intouch.org.

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