Teach Them To Work

Marvin Noble
Blytheville, Arkansas

Parents, we need to teach our children to work. Fathers are exhorted to bring up their children "in the training and admonition of the Lord" (Eph. 6:4). I want to show that this involves training to work - that the Scriptures teach us we should labor, and then I wish to give some suggestions to help parents develop their children to be workers.

The Bible teaches that a Christian has an obligation to work. It is commanded, and anyone who refuses to work is walking disorderly and should be withdrawn from (1 Thess. 4:11; 2 Thess. 6:15). Labor provides us an opportunity to supply our needs, encourages honest living, gives means to provide for one's household and also for others who may have need (1 Thess. 4:12; 1 Tim. 5:8; Eph. 4:28). The obligations of a Christian woman within the home certainly require a willingness to work.

Here are some suggestions of how parents may raise their children to be willing workers:

Parents need to show by their own attitude and example the characteristics of good laborers. Slothful fathers and sloven mothers seldom raise diligent workers.

Parents need to give suitable opportunities for children to work. Toddlers need to be given ways to help and teenagers should be given tasks to perform. Tasks should not be beyond their ability nor so burdensome that drudgery develops a hatred of work.

Being a good father and mother always takes a lot of patience. Some fathers find it much easier to mow the lawn themselves, and mothers find it easier to wash their own dishes than to put up with the "hassle" of training the child.

Children need to be encouraged in their work. It often helps to work along side the child and give him companionship. Be careful lest the child hears only criticism. He needs to hear your praise and appreciation for good effort and a job well done. Of course some tasks need to be regularly performed simply as a part of one's share of household duties; but rewards given for other work help develop a joy in working.

Parents, don't fail your child. Teach him to work.

Guardian of Truth XXXVI: 21, pp. 649, 650
November 5, 1992