Intentional Times of Teaching our Kids - Part 5

Posted by Randy | Labels: , , , , , , , , | Posted On Friday, May 28, 2010 at 12:01 AM

This week I've been sharing some information from Reggie Joiner in his book Think Orange that help parents be intentional about how and when they teach their kids. These times are based on Deuteronomy 6:4-9:
"'Listen, O Israel! The LORD is our God, the LORD alone. And you must love the LORD your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your strength. And you must commit yourselves wholeheartedly to these commands that I am giving you today. Repeat them again and again to your children. Talk about them when you are at home and when you are on the road, when you are going to bed and when you are getting up. Tie them to your hands and wear them on your forehead as reminders. Write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.'"
Everything I've shared up through yesterday (4 posts/4 days) was primarily aimed at parents. But, if you look more closely at this passage you'll see that it wasn't addressed just to parents who had children in their home right then and there. Moses said, "Listen, O Israel!" He's speaking to the family of Israel and not just the parents.

There are a couple of things in here we all need to notice. First, we're all commanded to love God with our entire being. Jesus quoted this very passage often as the first part of the Great Commandment, along with loving neighbor and self (which are also found in the writings of Moses). All of us in God's family are called to totally commit to these "commands," or the teachings of God. 

But Moses also understood how easy it is for any of us to forget God as we get busy in our daily lives. I know I do - it's easy, even when I'm working at the church. So, Moses tells us a second thing we need to work on - do things to keep God and His teachings in front of us all the time. It's the old "out-of-sight, out-of-mind" problem. I certainly suffer from it, and I suspect most of us do. So, we have to constantly do things to remind us of God's presence with us. Certainly a daily time with God is a great remind. But it might also include listening to Christian radio or music in the car and even at work. It might include reading a daily devotional booklet. Maybe you put a note on your mirror or computer screen to remind you. Wear jewelry that reminds us of God. These are just a few ideas - I'm sure you can come up with more.

This is important for all of us, but Moses tells us it's particularly important for parents. If we're constantly watching for what God is doing and where He is working in and around us, we'll find plenty of teachable moments not only for ourselves but also for our children. We'll have opportunities while we drive and while we're sharing a meal together and lots of other times. It's the same principle for our children as it is for us, except that we need to actively help keep God "in-sight" for our kids. We have that responsibility.

We can't give what we don't have. So, if we want our kids to become more loving, more like Jesus Christ, ideally it needs to begin in us. If we're going to be more intentional with our times with our children, we've got to begin by being more intentional for ourselves. Then, as opportunities arise at meal times, while we're driving, when we're going to bed or when we're waking up, we can share the wonder and majesty and glory of God with our kids. It's the old saying, "Killing two birds with one stone!"

Intentional Times of Teaching Our Kids - Part 4

Posted by Randy | Labels: , , , , , , | Posted On Thursday, May 27, 2010 at 12:01 AM







Today I'm looking at the fourth way parents can help teach their children biblical truths. I'll wrap this collection of articles tomorrow, but all this is based on the passage below from Deuteronomy 6:4-9:
"'Listen, O Israel! The LORD is our God, the LORD alone. And you must love the LORD your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your strength. And you must commit yourselves wholeheartedly to these commands that I am giving you today. Repeat them again and again to your children. Talk about them when you are at home and when you are on the road, when you are going to bed and when you are getting up. Tie them to your hands and wear them on your forehead as reminders. Write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.'"
Below is a chart that summarizes the four teaching times lifted up in this passage. I'm covering one each day, quoting material from a book entitled Think Orange by Reggie Joiner. Yesterday I covered the third time - Bed Time. Today I wrap up with to Morning Time.


Times
Communication
Role
Goal
Meal Time
Formal Discussion
Teacher
Establish Values
Drive Time
Informal Dialogue
Friend
Interpret Life
Bed Time
Intimate Conversation
Counselor
Build Intimacy
Morning Time
Encouraging Words
Coach
Instill Purpose
Getting up in the morning provides a blank page for the family to start fresh relationally. Whether you eat breakfast together or just interact for a brief moment, morning has the potential of planting an important emotional seed in the heart of a child. Just a few encouraging words carefully spoken or written can give your child a sense of value and instill purpose. Imagine parents as coaches, sending their kids into an important game. Parents should ask themselves the question, What can I say or do to give them fuel for dealing with whatever they have to face today? (Most teachers will tell you they can sense if things went well at home by a child's demeanor when he arrives at school.)

Intentional Times of Teaching Our Kids - Part 3

Posted by Randy | Labels: , , , , , , | Posted On Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 12:01 AM











This week I'm offering a short collection of articles that share ways parents can help teach their children biblical truths. These are based on the passage below from Deuteronomy 6:4-9:
"'Listen, O Israel! The LORD is our God, the LORD alone. And you must love the LORD your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your strength. And you must commit yourselves wholeheartedly to these commands that I am giving you today. Repeat them again and again to your children. Talk about them when you are at home and when you are on the road, when you are going to bed and when you are getting up. Tie them to your hands and wear them on your forehead as reminders. Write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.'"
Below is a chart that summarizes the four teaching times lifted up in this passage. I'm covering one each day, quoting material from a book entitled Think Orange by Reggie Joiner. Yesterday I covered the second time - Drive Time. Today I move on to Bed Time.

Times
Communication
Role
Goal
Meal Time
Formal Discussion
Teacher
Establish Values
Drive Time
Informal Dialogue
Friend
Interpret Life
Bed Time
Intimate Conversation
Counselor
Build Intimacy
Morning Time
Encouraging Words
Coach
Instill Purpose
Tucking children into bed can also be a meaningful time for families. Too many parents miss the potential of this time because they have a habit of sending their kids to bed rather than taking them. There is something about the private domain of a child's room that gives the parent a chance to have an intimate conversation and become the kind of counselor who listens to the heart of a child. (Have you ever seen a child get mad and go to their room and shut the door? It's like she is saying, "I am upset with you and closing you out." The door to a child's room is an important metaphorical door to keep open.)

Intentional Times of Teaching our Kids - Part 2

Posted by Randy | Labels: , , , , , , | Posted On Tuesday, May 25, 2010 at 12:01 AM

Yesterday I began a short collection of articles that share ways parents can help teach their children biblical truths. These are based on the passage below from Deuteronomy 6:4-9:
"'Listen, O Israel! The LORD is our God, the LORD alone. And you must love the LORD your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your strength. And you must commit yourselves wholeheartedly to these commands that I am giving you today. Repeat them again and again to your children. Talk about them when you are at home and when you are on the road, when you are going to bed and when you are getting up. Tie them to your hands and wear them on your forehead as reminders. Write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.'"
Below is a chart I used this past Sunday that summarizes the four teaching times lifted up in this passage. I'm covering one each day, quoting material from a book entitled Think Orange by Reggie Joiner. Yesterday I covered the first time - Meal Time. Today I move on to Drive Time.

Times
Communication
Role
Goal
Meal Time
Formal Discussion
Teacher
Establish Values
Drive Time
Informal Dialogue
Friend
Interpret Life
Bed Time
Intimate Conversation
Counselor
Build Intimacy
Morning Time
Encouraging Words
Coach
Instill Purpose
Walking or traveling together seems to provide a unique opportunity as well. It is a convenient time to stimulate the kind of informal dialogue that allows kids to drive their own agendas. These times give parents an opportunity to build a relationship through nonthreatening experiences. At some level the parent can actually function as a friend or companion and interpret life together with their children. (Today's cultural mirror to this can be drive time. It has a few "enemies," like video games, cell phones, and music, even though creative parents may actually use some of these enemies to generate interesting questions or dialogue.)

Intentional Times of Teaching Our Kids - Part 1

Posted by Randy | Labels: , , , , , , | Posted On Monday, May 24, 2010 at 5:24 PM

This past Sunday I shared the importance I see in the Bible for the church and the family to intentionally partner to reach this generation of children and students, as well as generations to come. Much of this thought is based on Deuteronomy 6:4-9:
"'Listen, O Israel! The LORD is our God, the LORD alone. And you must love the LORD your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your strength. And you must commit yourselves wholeheartedly to these commands that I am giving you today. Repeat them again and again to your children. Talk about them when you are at home and when you are on the road, when you are going to bed and when you are getting up. Tie them to your hands and wear them on your forehead as reminders. Write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.'"
Moses is speaking to the nation of Israel, the people of God. As he prepares them to enter the Promised Land, he reminds them of how important it is to not only keep God's reality and presence in front of everyone, but to constantly teach this to the children. This is the only way these truths will live. If one generation stops passing on what they've seen God do and what they've heard about from earlier times, the children won't know about God.

In working on this message for Sunday, I used a book by Reggie Joiner entitled Think Orange. There's a good reason for this title, but it take more time to explain it than I want to devote to it now. Maybe another time. For now, I want to quote four passages from this book about the four times listed in Deuteronomy. I've listed them below in a chart I shared with our church on Sunday. They sum up ideas about how we might teach our children through the plan from this passage in Deuteronomy. I'm going to share one passage a day this week (for a total of five days) so be sure to check back each day.

Times
Communication
Role
Goal
Meal Time
Formal Discussion
Teacher
Establish Values
Drive Time
Informal Dialogue
Friend
Interpret Life
Bed Time
Intimate Conversation
Counselor
Build Intimacy
Morning Time
Encouraging Words
Coach
Instill Purpose
Eating meals together is an optimal time to have a focused discussion. It gives parents a specific time to assume the role of a facilitator or teacher to target a specific truth in an interactive and relational context. Mealtime can be effective as an environment to systematically establish core principles. (I could list a lot of overused stats here, like the ones that claim the more meals families eat together, the better chance their children have of never taking drugs or going to prison. But I won't do that.)