What is the most powerful word in the English language? Is it “honor” or “love” or “country”? Maybe it’s “sacrifice.”
Stu Weber, who has written the book called Tender Warrior, says, “How about the word ‘dad’? Just walk through what you know about life. When it comes to power in a youngster’s world, I’ll put my money on the word ‘dad.’ As words go, hope, vision, and sacrifice don’t mean a whole lot to little ones, but the power of the word ‘dad’ reaches far beyond a youngster’s childhood.
“In fact, it spans generations. There are two ways to recognize power. One is to see it at work. The other is to measure what happens when it is gone. Either way, the word ‘dad’ is pretty potent. Present or absent, positive or negative, the power of the father is incredible.”
To assist in your quest to be good parents, here are ten commandments for guiding your children.
- Teach them, using God’s Word – Deuteronomy 6:4-9 (ESV) “Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one. 5 You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. 6 And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart.
7 You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. 8 You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. 9 You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.
- Tell them what’s right and wrong – ( 1 Kings 1:6 (ESV) His father had never at any time displeased him by asking, “Why have you done thus and so?” He was also a very handsome man, and he was born next after Absalom.
- See them as gifts from God – Psalm 127:3 (ESV) Behold, children are a heritage from the LORD, the fruit of the womb a reward.
- Guide them in godly ways – Proverbs 22:6 (ESV) Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it.
- Discipline them – Proverbs 29:17 (ESV) Discipline your son, and he will give you rest; he will give delight to your heart.
- Love them unconditionally – Luke 15:11-32 (ESV) And he said, “There was a man who had two sons. 12 And the younger of them said to his father, ‘Father, give me the share of property that is coming to me.’ And he divided his property between them. 13 Not many days later, the younger son gathered all he had and took a journey into a far country, and there he squandered his property in reckless living. 14 And when he had spent everything, a severe famine arose in that country, and he began to be in need. 15 So he went and hired himself out to one of the citizens of that country, who sent him into his fields to feed pigs. 16 And he was longing to be fed with the pods that the pigs ate, and no one gave him anything. 17 “But when he came to himself, he said, ‘How many of my father’s hired servants have more than enough bread, but I perish here with hunger! 18 I will arise and go to my father, and I will say to him, “Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you. 19 I am no longer worthy to be called your son. Treat me as one of your hired servants.”’ 20 And he arose and came to his father. But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and felt compassion, and ran and embraced him and kissed him. 21 And the son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.’ 22 But the father said to his servants, ‘Bring quickly the best robe, and put it on him, and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet.
23 And bring the fattened calf and kill it, and let us eat and celebrate. 24 For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found.’ And they began to celebrate. 25 “Now his older son was in the field, and as he came and drew near to the house, he heard music and dancing. 26 And he called one of the servants and asked what these things meant.
27 And he said to him, ‘Your brother has come, and your father has killed the fattened calf, because he has received him back safe and sound.’ 28 But he was angry and refused to go in. His father came out and entreated him, 29 but he answered his father, ‘Look, these many years I have served you, and I never disobeyed your command, yet you never gave me a young goat, that I might celebrate with my friends. 30 But when this son of yours came, who has devoured your property with prostitutes, you killed the fattened calf for him!’ 31 And he said to him, ‘Son, you are always with me, and all that is mine is yours. 32 It was fitting to celebrate and be glad, for this your brother was dead, and is alive; he was lost, and is found.’”
- Do not provoke them to wrath – Ephesians 6:4 (ESV) Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.
- Earn their respect by example – 1 Timothy 3:4 (ESV) He must manage his own household well, with all dignity keeping his children submissive…
- Provide for their physical needs – 1 Timothy 5:8 (ESV) But if anyone does not provide for his relatives, and especially for members of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.
- Pass your faith along to them – 2 Timothy 1:5 (ESV) I am reminded of your sincere faith, a faith that dwelt first in your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice and now, I am sure, dwells in you as well.
What if God should place in your hand a diamond, and tell you to inscribe on it a sentence which should e read at the last day, and be shown then as an index of our own thoughts and feelings? What care, what caution, would you exercise in the selection!
Now, this is what God has done, He has placed before you, the immortal minds of your children, more imperishable than the diamond, on which you are about to inscribe every day and every hour, by your instructions, by our spirit, or by your example, something which will remain, and be exhibited for or against you at the judgment day.