Summary: 1 of 2 on sharing your faith. This message is on sharing your faith with your children. Source for the outline came from Timothy Peck on sermon Central

Most of the time when you think of passing on a legacy you consider the ways you can leave some THING to your descendants—Wealth, a name, jewelry, or maybe a special antique.

There is a more valuable thing you can leave to your children than all of these. It is the legacy of faith…

“Listen, people of Israel! The LORD our God is the only LORD. 5 Love the LORD your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your strength. 6 Always remember these commands I give you today. 7 Teach them to your children, and talk about them when you sit at home and walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. 8 Write them down and tie them to your hands as a sign. Tie them on your forehead to remind you, 9 and write them on your doors and gates. Deuteronomy 6:4-9

Many people operate as if they are a chest of drawers with divided up lives: One drawer, is for work; another drawer is for sports; another for family; and another for God. Each day they open and shut these drawers as needed.

Does Christ simply want to be one of the drawers of our lives? No! A more accurate understanding of the place Christ should be in our lives is to see Him as the “chest of drawers.” We CANNOT give what we do not first possess ourselves!

It was Dr. James Dobson who once accurately declared that morals, convictions, values of a child are more often “caught” than “taught.”

You are teaching them right now the value of your faith by how much harmony there is between your lips and your life.

If you tell them that a relationship with the Lord is important but they never see you opening the Bible, praying, sharing your faith, going to church or living according to God’s principles, what message will your children get?

Diligence! The word diligent carries the idea of thoughtful care at every step along the way.

It’s a little like growing tomatoes. You start them out in a window box protected by glass. When they are a little bigger you put them in the garden and protect them with a fence. When they get big and heavy to keep them out of the dirt you stake them up with ribbon or nylon (not string—it’s too harsh and it damages the plant). Eventually the plant is strong, healthy and bears beautiful tomatoes!

5 I remember your true faith. That faith first lived in your grandmother Lois and in your mother Eunice, and I know you now have that same faith. 2 Timothy 1:5

Here we learn that Paul recognized Timothy as a young man strong in doctrine and faith, ready to be a leader and servant of Jesus Christ. How, according to this verse, did he get this way?

It was the persistent training and example of Timothy’s godly mother and grandmother that had made the difference.

You are not your kids best buddies and friends – you are the parents. Sometimes you must make unpopular decisions.

Preparing your child to be used by God often requires allowing your child to suffer Failure and Pain. There are rules to life and consequences that come when you break the rules.

The Rules of Discipline: (Discipline means “teach” – not to punish)

-Never discipline in anger

-Always explain why you are disciplining the child

-Demonstrate your love afterwards

-Always express forgiveness after corrective measures have been taken

-Never mention the subject again. Treat the child as if it never happened

-Follow through with discipline. Make sure a command is obeyed

-Correct disobedience

If you say there is going to be a consequence – there had better be a consequence – or you are teaching them that they can get away with things. You can overlook spilled milk. You must correct the child that looks you in the eye and pours the milk on the floor.

Quality time happens because you are available! Once when my eldest daughter came home from school she was obviously upset. I said, “Do you want to talk?” She said, “NO!” Then she talked.

It is important to know your children and to be there for them. It’s especially important for fathers to spend time with their teenage daughters (as well as their sons) and teach them what it is to be a man of God. Mothers should spend time with their sons (and daughters) and teach them what a Godly woman is like.

There is a God given hunger in every child’s heart to have positive affirmation from their parents. Even Jesus received it from his father.

“As soon as Jesus was baptized, he came up out of the water. Then heaven opened, and he saw God’s Spirit coming down on him like a dove.  And a voice from heaven said, “This is my Son, whom I love, and I am very pleased with him.” Matthew 3:16

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