“Arise, cry out in the night, at the beginning of the watches; pour out your heart like water before the face of the Lord. Lift your hands toward Him for the life of your young children, who faint from hunger at the head of every street.”
As Jeremiah looked out over the rubble that was once the city of Jerusalem, his eyes welled up with tears. A nation that was designed to honor and glorify the Lord, was now devastated by its own sin. A lifetime of pleading with the people and their rulers had failed to stop the inevitable consequences of their repeated actions.
Now, with a broken heart, he once again pleads with the people to return to the Lord. This time his motivation is different. Instead of warning them of a Babylonian invasion, he draws their attention to a more personal matter. He pleads with the parents to return to the Lord for the sake of their children.
Most parents claim they would do anything for their children, and in many cases, they can site example after example of selfless acts of love. These may include sleepless nights, hours of overtime, setting aside personal ambitions, and giving up friendships, hobbies, or other extracurricular activities. All of these are surely expressions of love, but the highest expression, is to submit to Christ and live a life that honors the Lord and sets a pattern for your children to follow.
Children will always imitate their parents, so the first step in seeing our children walk with Jesus is to set the example for them. The first step in setting that example, is to get our own lives right with God. If we want to see our children love and serve Christ, we need to be modeling that life ourselves. Children don’t learn best by being told what to do, they learn best by watching an example and mimicking what they have seen.
What example are you setting?