“Listen, Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is One. Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength. These words that I am giving you today are to be in your heart. Repeat them to your children. Talk about them when you sit in your house and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Bind them as a sign on your hand and let them be a symbol on your forehead. Write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.” Deuteronomy 6:4-9
We just arrived back from Young Lives Ablaze Camp last week with our kiddos and support staff. The week was amazing and one that I personally will never forget. Let me share with you some comments that were shared with me that came from camp.
A leader talking to me about one of his campers raised in the church, who raised their hand to accept Jesus Christ on Monday night- “I never knew that she did not have a relationship with Jesus. I assumed that since she has been here all her life that she already did.” A leader from another church about a PK who raised their hand on Wednesday night to accept Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior-The Boss of them-“I am shocked. I was just sure that she already had a personal relationship with Jesus because of who her father is He always shares the Gospel during his messages.” And finally a text I received Saturday morning from one of our parents, “Thinking you should have a class for the parents to prepare them for the huge changes that occur at camp. It’s amazing to see the transformation. He is on fire for Christ now.”
During the entire week, I was personally burdened by something spiritual that I could not pin point. Each night’s messages, it became heavier and heavier. As I prayed and sought the Lord each day, His Spirit continually reminded me, “Preach Jesus. Preach the Gospel.”
After Thursday night’s message, it became clear what that burden was: I, possibly we, take for granted that our own children as well as those we are leading spiritually not only know the Gospel but have made that decision to follow Jesus Christ. We just assume that since they are raised in a Christian home, they have heard the Gospel, it has been explained to them, and that they have already made a decision for Christ. How short sighted is that.
So here are the 2 Truths the Lord made very clear to me this past week.
First, we must never assume that our own children are saved. We should continually share the Gospel with them, by our words and actions and deeds. We need to take time to fully explain what Jesus Christ did for each and every one of us and what it means to accept that eternal gift of salvation.
Next, once that decision is made and they choose to become a disciple of Jesus Christ, it is now the responsibility of the parents to fulfill Deuteronomy 6:4-9. They need to take the lead to train up their children in righteousness. That also includes being the living example of Jesus Christ to their children.
So in closing, let’s never take for granted the salvation of our children or even our family and friends. Take time to “make disciples and teach them to observe all that He has commanded us.” Matthew 28:19,20