By Brad Klassen
I have a deep desire to see my children choose to live life God’s way. I have prayed for it often.
The problem is, my children have me as their father. I get tired and don’t want to play. I have been known to lose my cool when things don’t go right. I overreact. The list could go on and on. Still, my heart’s desire is that my kids know and follow Jesus. I often wonder how, with all my failings, I can give them the best chance to do that.
When I dive into God’s word I discover that, way-way back, Noah knew some parenting secrets. We catch a glimpse of this in Hebrews 11:7.
“By faith Noah, when warned about things not yet seen,
in holy fear built an ark to save his family.”
Noah, in his strong desire to save his family, obeyed God in holy fear. Noah responded to God’s call in faith. God answered that faith as his family fully believed and walked with him into the unknown.
I am not saying that this is a guarantee or a formula that if you love Jesus and build an ark all your kids will faithfully love Him too, but we can learn from Noah about how to help our kids grow in their relationship with Jesus. Here are five secrets Noah knew about raising Jesus-loving kids:
Our kids are watching us. What are we showing them?
Noah put his faith into action, and his kids saw it and followed suit.
If we want our kids to follow in our footsteps, where are we leading them?
Instead of joining the culture, Noah’s kids joined him as he lead them to the only place of rescue and shelter from the storm. How can we do the same?
Dare to believe in a God who calls us to do big things because He is a big God.
Noah was ready even if he didn’t know how to do it because he had big faith in a big God.
Your relationship with Jesus will produce fruit in ways you may not even imagine.
I wonder what the boys told their children and grandchildren about their dad. I bet it was a family favorite around the campfire. Even thousands of years later, we tell the story in wonder. He would have never imagined the influence of his actions could have stretched so far.
Big results start with the small stuff.
Noah’s family chose to follow in his footsteps, but it didn’t start with the ark. We need to remember that God chose Noah because he was a “righteous man, blameless among the people of his time, and he walked faithfully with God” (Genesis 6:9).
Even though we only glimpse a piece of Noah’s hundreds of years of life, we can guess most of his years were lived with pretty much the same integrity and obedience.
Was he perfect? No. Did he know God’s grace in his life? Yes.
That encourages me as a parent – to know that God’s grace is deep enough to help me do what He calls me to, even if it’s something counter-cultural, painfully weird, or long and difficult. I will do it anyway, out of holy fear of God, to save my family.
How can you as a parent can begin to lead your children to grow in Jesus?
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Brad Klassen is a writer, story teller, and public speaker. His passion is to bring the Bible to life for all ages and help others grow in their walk with Jesus. He and his wife, Jen, have 4 kids and live in Steinbach, Manitoba, Canada. For more from Brad visit adventuresofjuniorbear.weebly.com where you can also receive his free guide 17 Practical Ways to Grow Your Child’s Love for Jesus.