A Lesson Learned
One thing I did not expect to learn, but was made painfully aware of, was my unhealthy dependence on the Church. Now you may think, "But Ashlee. The Church is a GOOD thing. You need to rely on the Church." And while I understand your thoughts, I realized that I was depending on the Church to take care of things that were actually MY responsibility.
Namely, discipling my kids. I realized, once we were no longer able to attend worship as a family, that I was relying a little too heavily on the Church to teach my children about the truth and hope of Jesus. It was so nice to drop them off in their classes on Sunday, know that they were loved and cared for, and then pick them after worship. They could often tell me a snippet of what they learned in their class (Thanks to the AMAZING CPC Kids teachers!), and we may have a couple follow-up questions in the car on the drive home. But sadly, that was often the extent.
So when the pandemic led to us all worshipping at home, around screens, and I couldn't conveniently check my kids into their classes, I was faced with a dilemma. Sure, we watched the videos with the children's lesson. But for young, active kids like mine, it was sometimes a real task just to get that done.
When the pandemic didn't ease up after a bit, I realized, something had to change. I was deeply convicted of how much I had banked on the church and my kids' teachers on Sunday to teach my children about truth, hope and grace. This was not the way God had intended it.
"You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise."
The CPC Kids' teachers, as great as they are, were not sitting in my house day after day, walking with kids down the street as we went on countless family walks during that time, tucking my kids in at night, or waking them up in the morning. (And it would be totally weird if they were!) That was me and my husband. It was up to Chase and I to teach our children to love the Lord with all their heart, soul, and might. It was up to us to pray for our children everyday. It was up to us to sit down with them and talk about how God is a good God who has big plans for each of us.
Did we knock it out of the park right away? No way! Are we still wobbling, trying to find a routine that works for us? Of course! By no means do we have it figured out. But we feel burdened, like never before, that it is our job to make Jesus known in our home. It is our responsibility to tell our kids where we see God moving in our lives. It is up to us to sit down and read scripture with them, and discuss how that applies to our day-to-day.
There are days it doesn't happen, sure. But there are now more days when I come to the breakfast table and see that one of them has already sat out the kids' devotional book we read together. There are more moments of, "Momma, Daddy, can I pray now?," followed by the sweetest (and sometimes longest) prayers, thanking God for our family, our friends, and that our dog, Otis', back feels better (That somehow always makes it in there). There are more moments with little voices saying "Alexa, play 'This is how I fight my battles."
Because while my church can support and pray for us a family, it is ultimately MY job, as their parent, to make much of Jesus in our home and in our lives.
Deuteronomy 6:5-7 is a scripture I thought I knew well. I hear the first part quoted all the time. I forgot the 2nd part about teaching your kids diligently. I don't hear that part too often.
Just want you to know that when your kids have been in the same classroom with me ( lots of times) I have witnessed their sweet personalities and zest for life. The thing that stands out most though, is their love for one another. Your amazing kids are a reflection of you and Chases love and guidance you give them daily.
You made me realize that I don't share scripture often with my own child. I vow to do better. Thanks for this blog.💜