Recently, I drove my daughter to an area that is blessed to have lots of blackberries. Her grandmother had it mind to pick berries that morning, but she came by just as my daughter was getting out of bed. We agreed that my daughter would get ready and I would drive her to the location. After my wife helped her get appropriate clothing, I put on my sneakers and walked out the door with my daughter. I thought I was just dropping her off, but she asked me to come with her and the still small voice that holds me accountable to articles such as Do Something With Your Kids and Practice What You Post reminded me of what’s most important these days.
We were about a half-hour into our picking when it occurred to me that I should test my daughter’s knowledge of Creation. We do this from time to time, but she’s only a kindergartner, so I gave her an easy question. “Which came first, blackberries or people?” Her response was quick. “Berries,” she said in a matter of fact way. “Why do you say that?” I asked. “Because on day 3, God created grass and trees and food.” I was a proud dad, so much so that I did not think to keep going. Just the thought of it today makes me do a mental fist pump, followed by a ‘That’s my baby!’
Here’s the thing. We should use opportunities such as these to teach our kids about the Bible. If you find that they do not know the basics, don’t get mad at their Sunday school teacher. That individual has only a certain amount of time with your child. It’s actually our responsibility to train up our children (Proverbs 22:6), and that training should last years, not one morning in a field picking (and eating) berries.
When writing about God’s law, Moses instructs the Israelite's to teach it diligently to their children, no matter the time of day (Deuteronomy 6:7, 11:19). In order to be diligently doing anything, you have to be steady, earnest and energetic. It’s worth noting here that Paul tells an up-and-coming Timothy to study to show himself approved unto God (2 Timothy 2:15). Proverbs are full of things about wise men following and listening to God. Psalms tells us things like, ‘Blessed is the man…whose delight is in the law of the Lord, and in his law doth he meditates day and night” (Psalm 1:1-2).
The point of all this is to say that we, dads, should be teaching our children about God, Jesus, and all things Bible. We should also know what we’re talking about with our children. This means that Bible time with them should not be our only time in and around God’s Word. If you are not already doing so, get started on a Bible reading plan. Attend a men’s retreat with brothers from your church. It’ll get you the swift kick in the pants you need to be a better father, husband and church member. Speaking of church, take notes during sermons and read over them at various times.
Whatever you do, get and stay involved. Teach your children and test their knowledge about the Bible. And don’t stop when you get a more detailed answer than you were expecting. I did, and even though it led to this article for One Million Dads, I want to live up to my word. I want to be an example. I also want to hear my Lord say, “Well done, thou good and faithful servant.” Until that time, I need to be working with and teaching my kids.
We all should. Let’s get started today.