Sowing Seeds in our Children

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As parents, it’s our responsibility to teach our children everything they need to know before we release them into the wild world. From how to walk and talk, which we quickly regret once they learn how to repeat everything, to reading and writing.

Sowing Seeds of Faith in Your Children

As Christian parents our responsibility goes much deeper than just walking and talking or reading and writing. They have been entrusted to us by God. Now that’s quite the calling. He has entrusted us to teach them about Him and and His everlasting love for us.

How can we teach them to truly know God rather than just know about Him?

How do we teach them that it’s a personal relationship with Jesus Christ that saves us?

The more I thought about how to teach my own children the saving grace Jesus offers, the more intimidated I became. I mean…this is their eternity we’re talking about here! And then one day as I was frustrated and about to pull my hair out from this adventure called parenting, it hit me. Or rather the Lord hit me with it smack between the eyes.

Parenting is like gardening.

Now that’s a little difficult for me to relate to, since any and all plants or herbs I’ve ever had died in record time. Seriously…it’s scary how fast I can kill them. Thankfully, my children have lasted longer than the plants and herbs I have tried to grow, otherwise this would just be an awkward post. But stick with me here.

Have you ever considered planting a seed and growing a thriving garden in your children? Let’s look at the Parable of the Sower in Matthew 13.

“A sower went out to sow. And as he sowed, some seeds fell along the path, and the birds came and devoured them. Other seeds fell on rocky ground, where they did not have much soil, and immediately they sprang up, since they had no depth of soil, but when the sun rose they were scorched. And since they had no root, they withered away. Other seeds fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked them. Other seeds fell on good soil and produced grain, some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty. He who has ears, let him hear.” Matthew 13:3b-9 (ESV)

This parable gives us great guidance for teaching our children and sowing seeds in them.

  1. Planting the seeds. When we read this Scripture, we see the seeds were thrown on several different places, each producing a different result. Where are you sowing seeds in your children – the path, the rocky ground, in the thorns or deep in the rich soil? Are you simply taking them to church and hope they “turn out okay”? Or are you purposefully speaking God’s Word into their life? Be careful though, this can be a slippery and dangerous slope of planting seeds.
    1. Planting seeds on the path is superficial and only done for show. The path is where everyone walks and can easily be seen. But it is also where the seeds will be stepped on, trampled on and pushed around so they don’t grow or take root.
    2. Of course, the rocky ground isn’t much better. Throwing out the Word of God into a shallow and rocky area that will get them “fired up” for a moment, but withers when the enemy attacks or when times get tough because there was no depth to the teaching is not what we want for our children.
    3. Then you have the thorny ground, which I think is where many of our children fall today. They are taught from an early age the Word of God, but they choose to follow the world and the desires of the flesh rather than the desires of God. They know the truth, but allow their fleshly desires to seep in little by little until it’s too late and they are swallowed up in sin. And by that point, they feel hopeless and alone.
    4. Lastly, you have the rich soil. The goal of any gardener is to plant seeds in rich soil that will establish roots that go deep down and are not easily removed, washed away or blown away. Of course, this takes time, energy and effort on the gardeners part. We must strive to instill God’s Word in them and grow them so the soil becomes rich with deep roots that cannot be shaken.
  2. Water them. Once the seeds are planted, you must water them and nuture them to help them grow. There is no formula or recipe you can follow that will guarantee they will follow the Lord. But, instilling God’s Word and principles in them isn’t just reading the Bible and praying with them in a passing moment or for the token 15 minute devo. It’s not something we can check off a To-Do List for the day. It takes our time, sometimes years to make sure that the seed is planted in the rich soilUltimately, the rich soil is a matter of the heart, but there are a few things we can do to help guide them along the way.
    1. Water them with prayer.  We can’t do it alone. This isn’t a solo journey. It is done through prayer and listening to the still small voice of the Holy Spirit. And for that…it takes us – the parents – spending time with God in prayer.
    2. Water them with God’s Word. Although prayer is a powerful and mighty tool, we can also help them grow by teaching them about God’s Word and His heart. Don’t get me wrong, these are no easy tasks. But combined with prayer and the power of the Holy Spirit, we can trust that God’s Word will never return to him void. We must trust God to “do His job” and work in their lives using us as his instruments. But this means we – the parents – must be dwelling in God’s Word. Sometimes that means immersing ourselves in God’s Word – taping up reminders, listening to teachings of God’s Word, listening to the Bible on CD or filling our house with Christian music are great ways to immerse ourselves in God’s truth.
  3. Bear much fruit. When they are fully grown, they will bear much fruit. When Jesus explains the parable later in chapter 13, he says of the seeds planted in rich soil, “As for what was sown on good soil, this is the one who hears the word and understands it. He indeed bears fruit and yields, in one case a hundredfold, in another sixty, and in another thirty.” Isn’t that what we’re aiming for – that they will hear and understand God’s Word and bear much fruit? That their life will be in complete service to Him? I’m not talking about their profession, but how they live out their life for Jesus daily. If we have planted the seeds and watered them with prayer and God’s Word, we have to trust that God will keep His promise. That He will take care of them when they hear and understand His Word.

Whether you’re a gardener or not, as Christian parents we all want our children to grow in their understanding and knowledge of God’s Word. With some discipline on our part and fervent prayer, we can help our children be effective tools in this world for the Lord.

Where are you planting the seeds in your children?

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Hi, there! I’m Heather Bowen, and I am so glad you’re here.

My passion lies in helping homeschool moms balance marriage, motherhood, homemaking, and homeschooling all while remaining sane!

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