“Impress them on your children. Talk about them when
you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when
you get up.” (Deut. 6:7)
How to help young people grow spiritually? For
important matter we always give priority to do it. Which is more important, a
child’s academic achievement or his spiritual growth? Unless parents set the
priority right, don't expect children can have good spirituality. In other
words, are you nurturing a good citizen to pay a lot of taxes for the
country? Or do you want to make a visionary disciple for the kingdom of God?
The following are suggestions for the committed parents.
First, help your children understand that they must
exercise their relationship with God. God has no grandchildren, only
children. Salvation is a matter of life, and the sooner you experience the
consequences of obedience to the Holy Spirit, the better. Parents are not
only responsible for providing a warm home, but also for creating an
environment where everyone can share his spiritual life with one another. A
family worship time that has no reluctance, constraint, and provides freedom
to talk is the conduit for God to bless this home.
Second, let learning the Word of God be the center of
family education. The second generation of immigrants who grow up in the U.
S. has crisis of identity, for they are overwhelmed by the impact of two
different cultures. Christians must transcend their own culture, and insist
on God’s reign being greater than the human culture. Apply the efforts of
urging kids to learn Chinese to studying the Bible. Read the Bible once a year,
have Q and A at dinner meal, etc.
Third, we must adhere to the common code of the
family. Children can listen to the teacher at school, why do they just talk
back to their parents at home? Because there is no rule in the family. You
can't wait until your child enters the rebellious period to ask for
obedience; you have to set rules when they are young. Parents must of course
lead by example. But the most important thing is consistency. The content is
variable but the principle is unchanged. For example, after ten-o’clock
family evening prayer, little kids go to sleep, older kids continue to study,
and everyone relax at weekends, etc.
Fourth, the whole family participates in ministry
together. Teenagers need to do something that makes sense to affirm their
growth. Arrange some helpful activities to do with your child, and expand
their love for the Lord. For example, going to the church to clean up,
visiting nursing home, helping the elderly to clean their residence, going
downtown to serve the homeless, etc., will provide many opportunities to
communicate with the children.