What Are You Teaching Your Child About God?

The first words from a first born baby are just the best, aren’t they?

Our first child’s first word was… wait for it… wait for it… ball!

Yep, not original, but, girl, I wrote it down in the baby book, called my mom and was so excited I could have started a blog dedicated to his brilliance.
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Then, he added words, but only a few. He called my husband “Dadda” and he could also say “up” when he wanted out of his crib.

What he did not say, even after 11 whole months of his growing vocabulary was… mom… mama… nothing that in any way resembled a name for me. Me, you know, the woman who bears stretch marks… the woman who gave him life?!

I was not a happy mom.

So, I tried to coax him, educate him, and train him, but the child would not call me mama. However, once I tuned in, I realized he was calling me a name. It just wasn’t the name I was expecting.

Our kids look to us to see who God is and what He is like.
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Clayton was calling me… again, wait for it… wait for it… God. Yes, God, as in the Creator, Master of the universe, Perfect and Holy One. I was mortified! How could he call me that when I am so not that?!

No matter how much I corrected him — “No, Clayton, not God, Mama… say it, mama.”

“God” was all he would say.

So, I gave up and just went along with it. By his first birthday, he finally began to call me mama.

I think I discovered why he called me God. At least this is my theory.

He saw me in the kitchen making dinner, we sat at the table to eat that dinner and what did we do before we ate it? We bowed our heads and said, “Thank You, God, for our food.” Yes! He was brilliant. See? I should have started a blog about it! He clearly made the association that since I made the food and we thanked God for the food; I must be God!

You are not meant to be perfect. You are meant to pursue God and to be honest when you blow it.
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Well, I’m sure a pediatrician or child psychologist would explain it differently… uh, correctly. It probably had more to do with something totally innocent like the consonant and vowel combo of “god” was easier or more fun for him to pronounce! But, what I heard when he called me God was something very, very important.

I heard a gentle reminder that our kids look to us to see who God is.

As moms, our lives are the word pictures that our children see… do they see GOD?

In order to reflect God’s love, we must first receive God’s love for ourselves.
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If your child were to describe who God is and what He’s like based on what he sees in you, how would he describe God? Kind? Impatient? Gentle? Harsh?

Now, I know that question can create a lot of guilt or fear for those of us who are not perfect moms — okay, for all of us if we’re honest because none of us are perfect! We’ve all blown it.

But, mom, you are not to be perfect, you are to be pursuing God and honest when you blow it.

If you want your child to see God through your life, then God’s Word must be hidden in your heart.
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We often think it is only our strengths and best behavior that reflect and communicate the character of God to our kids. But, mom, that isn’t true. Sure, when we’re firing on all our spiritual cylinders our lives are examples of who God is. But, when we’re misfiring, sputtering, and blowing it… human… our lives can still reflect who God is as we admit our failure, ask for help or forgiveness, and live a life of patience and complete dependence on God.

To reflect God’s love, we must receive God’s love.

To reveal God’s character, we must receive God’s kindness.

If you want your child to see God through your life, then God’s Word must be hidden in your heart.

Who God is will be obvious to your kids when your life is full of His grace, forgiveness, and peace.
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It’s that simple, that profound. Mom, who God is will be obvious to your kids as your life is full of His grace, forgiveness, and peace. Let Him love you and fill you with His peace and presence.

“Let the message about Christ, in all its richness, fill your lives. Teach and counsel each other with all the wisdom he gives. Sing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs to God with thankful hearts. And whatever you do or say, do it as a representative of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through him to God the Father.”  Colossians 3:16-17 NLT

Lord, help us receive your unconditional love and, then, reflect that love to our kids.
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Lord, help us as moms receive Your unconditional love and, then, reflect that love to our kids. We want to know You and we want our children to know You. Thank You for Your mercy that is new every morning. Fill us today so Your love will spill out of our yielded and grateful lives. Amen

Question: If your children were to describe who God is based on your example, what word do you hope they would use?

 

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