All quotations taken from 2003; Waterbrook Press
Chapter 5: The Discipling Mother
I want them to leave my home with a hunger and passion to know God personally and be used by him to accomplish great things for His kingdom. I want them to personally hear God’s voice and have his Spirit’s gentle touch and impression on their hearts as they read Scripture and struggle with the issues of their lives….Whatever else we give our children as they grow, he wants us to pass along an eternal vision, and purpose, as well as passion for Christ. If we are wise, we will keep this goal ever before us— to keep us focused on what really matters, on the ultimate purpose of our activity as parents. Chp 5 pg 80
I ponder these words. I stand on the cusp of one of my young men beginning the first leg of his journey outside our home. I can truthfully say that I do not think I have done well imparting some of this to him. I have felt very motivated my entire motherhood to prepare my son well to be a strong provider for a family that the Lord might one day grant him. I have wanted him to be able to lead with integrity and intellect in any sphere the Lord might have for him.
Page 83 discusses the reality of life and the pressure that is felt in every arena to measure up to the world’s standards.
The focus must always be the heart. Not the external standard- and this also applies to external standards of behavior that a Christian parent can become so caught up in. It is the heart that matters and the heart is the pre-eminent place of importance in Christ.
The fact that the word heart appears more than eight hundred times in any Bible translation should tell us something about how important our children’s hearts are to God. The first great commandment given in Deuternonomy (and quoted later by Jesus) is “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might” (6:5; also Luke 10:27). Chp 5 pg 84
Note: the biblical meaning of heart encompasses far beyond the scope of the physical organ pumping blood through our bodies.
Heart in the biblical sense is a much deeper, more meaningful word. The vast majority of the eight hundred occurrences in the Bible refers to the mental, emotional core of a person. In a sense, the biblical heart of a person is the core of that person’s being– who she really is inside. The word heart encompasses her inner thoughts, her true feelings, her motivations, the very seat of personhood. Chp 5 pg 84
The discipling focus in this chapter is broken down into sub-topics like this: a plan for shaping hearts, being “with” our children, instructing our children, training our children, guarding our children’s influences.
Sally Clarkson offers insight, depth, and instruction for each of these areas. She emphasizes the importance of being intentional about impacting the hearts of our children and that the discipleship model presented through Scripture is one of a long life relationship. In and out of many days, living life together, imparting the reality of real faith to our precious children -and the only way I can do that- is to nurture and develop my own faith and walk! I am pondering the concepts surrounding guarding influences. I have walked with this for many years- and we are currently more relaxed than we have been in earlier years. Some of this comes from having such older children now. Things are so very different. I am prayerfully pondering this in light of all my darlings.
I pray that the Lord helps me to keep my focus on the heart and He gives me wisdom to guide my children correctly and carefully. I pray that no cloud of apathy, laziness, or film of fatigue would allow me to overlook anything that might endanger my children or lead them astray.
Thanks for reading here! Be blessed dear ones!
As always, I welcome your reflections on what this means for you or your home/family.