By Darrel Haub
Please read the following words from the Psalms. “Lo, children are an heritage of the Lord: and the fruit of the womb is his reward. As arrows are in the hand of a mighty man; so are children of the youth. Happy is the man that hath his quiver full of them: they shall not be ashamed, but they shall speak with the enemies in the gate” (Psa. 127:3-5). Since the Bible identifies children as a great blessing from God, what is the man like who neglects spending time with his children. He is failing to enjoy some of the things that God gives us to make us happy. What a shame for men to neglect their children for some other pursuit to happiness. One of the greatest joys is right at hand. Are you enjoying them?
There are other Bible passages that help us see that we ought to spend time with our children. One of those is Galatians 6:7-10, “Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting. And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not. As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith.” Have you ever thought of the fact that time missed with children while they are young, will produce the harvest of time missed with children when they are older and you need them the most? Not a one of us can wait for years to develop a relationship with our children and somehow expect it to grow as they become adults. We must nuture the relationship while they are young and growing and developing attitudes and loves. Especially, what good things are we doing for those children of ours who are Christians? We have double responsibility towards them.
I notice another passage that teaches us something about why we ought to pay attention to our children while they are young in Psalms 39:6 which says, “Surely every man walketh in a vain shew: surely they are disquieted in vain: he heapeth up riches, and knoweth not who shall gather them.” I am persuaded that the passage is written to emphasize the foolishness of a person spending his earthly time in only gathering physical wealth that he must leave to “who knows who.” However many people today leave wills that give their earthly things to their children. If no will exists, our laws provide for such. Just think of how it must feel to know, as death draws near, you are leaving your earthly possessions to children that you have failed to develop a close relationship with. You are in essence leaving things that are precious to you to strangers because you failed to spend time with them while you could. Truly this must be a time of despair.
The greatest reason of all for spending time with your children is given in several parts of the Bible. One is Ephesians 6:4, but I want to quote from Deuteronomy 6:6-7, “And those words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.” The greatest thing that any parent can do for his children is to teach them God’s words. The quoted passage discusses several different activities of life that afford the opportunity to teach God’s word to others. The same is true for us and our children. I don’t know that this could be proven, but I suspect that as our life styles have changed to move us away from regular daily work and play together, our teaching each other God’s word has decreased. Real situations of life that occur while you are working or playing together give practical experience in how God’s word works. These lessons cannot be taught without spending time sitting, walking, lying and rising together. How many families go for days without seeing each other? What a tragedy!
Daddy, do things with your children. You are missing a great deal otherwise.
Guardian of Truth XXXVII: 12, p. 6-7
June 17, 1993