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January 16, 2022 | Doug Sauder
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“Only take heed to yourself, and diligently keep yourself, lest you forget the things your eyes have seen, and lest they depart from your heart all the days of your life. And teach them to your children and your grandchildren.”—Deuteronomy 4:9 (NKJV)
If you are a parent, teacher, aunt, uncle, or grandparent, you are being watched. And it’s not by Big Brother. It’s by little children.
As a mom with a daughter who just obtained her driving permit, I am keenly aware of the fact that I am modeling driving for her every day. Do I look at my phone? Do I multitask while driving? Do I want her to? We all know that actions speak louder than words, but what are we doing about it?
Deuteronomy 4:9 is not a call to perfection, but a call to action.
In general, we all have blind spots regarding the flaws in our character, and the children in our lives have a wonderful way of shining a floodlight on our weaknesses. It is usually not long after disciplining one of my children that I am reminded of a similar weakness in my own life. In that moment, I have a choice to make. I can tell myself that nobody is perfect, I am not that bad off compared to others and move on, or I can take that moment of conviction to call out to the Lord for help.
Take heed to yourself. Diligently keep your soul. Don’t forget the miracles you have seen God do.
How does one keep his soul? In Psalm 16:8 (NKJV), David says, “I have set the Lord always before me.” In 2nd Corinthians 10:5, Paul reminds us to take every thought captive and make it obedient to Christ.
We must act. God has also given us this world and every good thing in it. When we are stuck on a hurt, habit, or hang-up that we cannot conquer, we must not accept defeat. Instead, we ought to reach out to a brother or sister in Christ and confess our sins so we will be healed. Meet for accountability with a group like Celebrate Recovery. Read Peter Scazarro’s Emotionally Healthy Church to work towards healing the wounds of our past. But whatever we do, we can’t do nothing. The act of following the ways of the Lord and teaching them to our children go hand and hand. Your life—and my life—is a lesson that is teaching others every moment.
DIG: Seek the scriptures and the Lord for clarity on an area in your life to which you should take heed.
DISCOVER: Share your discovery with a friend and commit to an action that would bring change and freedom in your life.
DISPLAY: Humbly teach your children what the Lord is doing in your life as you seek Him together.