How Does Your Garden Grow?
by Richard Innes
“Train a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not turn from it” (Proverbs 22:6, NIV).
I read about one atheist who objected strongly to teaching religion in public schools. His argument was that children should be allowed to reach maturity then decide for themselves what they choose to believe.
Coleridge the poet, who heard the atheist invited him to join him in his garden which happened to be overgrown with weeds.
“What do you see?” asked Coleridge.
“It’s nothing but a patch of weeds,” replied the atheist.
“Yes,” said Coleridge, “I decided to let the garden decide for itself what it should grow.”
To leave a child without guidance would be a disaster and if we don’t want to influence his thinking, why send him to school?
To train him in the way he should go involves training in every area of life-physically, intellectually, socially, emotionally, and spiritually-so that he becomes well balanced in every area of life and a mature, healthy interdependent adult.
This takes a lot of wisdom, guidance, and instruction. It doesn’t take care of itself. And what is the greatest teaching method? Modeling by example what we want our children to learn.
Suggested prayer: “Dear God, help me to model for my family the kind of person you want me to be so that they, seeing what you have done in my life, will want the same for themselves. Thank you for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus’ name, amen.”