Naturally, we want what’s best for our kids – for them to mature and become all God has for them. And we know we must make the most of the short time they’re living in our home. This is a training ground they will take with them for the rest of their lives.
To be sure, children will continue to learn and grow long after they leave our house. And there are many lessons they will learn elsewhere.
But we still have the honor, privilege, and responsibility to train them well while they’re in our home.
For many, this means trying to get them to conform to our image of them. But this is not what it means to train up a child in the way he should go.
This adage can be taken at least two different levels.
First is the big “C” Calling – training children to understand and appreciate the basic truth, goodness, and beauty of life.
There’s a way life works and it’s best to have a healthy respect for this reality.
This is similar to learning how to ride a bike or to swim. Once we learn the basic principles of balance or buoyancy in water, these are not things easily forgotten later. And they can be applied to many different situations.
Likewise, children are more likely to stay grounded in God’s reality once they’ve been trained to tune their hearts and souls to all that is true, good, and beautiful.
The little “c” calling then becomes more personal. Here we’re learning to see and train our child to grow in the way God has uniquely crafted him.
For example, it’s best to prune and cultivate an apple tree to produce apples, and not expect it to grow grapes.
And even here, once a child discovers his True Self, and not who the world or even his parents want him to be, he’s not likely to depart from this truth later.
Our kids are left unprepared when they’re not trained in the natural laws God has in place. And also when they remain lost to who God has uniquely created them to be.
Train your children in the way they should go, and when they are older, they will not depart from it.