I remember thinking when our children were young, that I had no idea where life would take them.
(With our children now having spent time in every continent except Australia, how true that has turned out to be!)
So I wanted God’s Word to go with them wherever they may go.
I knew I wanted to teach our kids the Bible. I really, desperately, wanted to teach our kids the Bible.
Well, this is personal, but since I have promised to write with “honesty and transparency,” here goes:
My husband and I never agreed just how to do that.
There, I said it.
We still disagree about how that could have, should have, been done.
My husband is definitely the more laid-back of the two of us. His brilliant idea was that the kids would “catch” it basically by osmosis. Yikes!
(To be fair, my husband wanted children who knew God and knew his Word, not children who could solely recount Scripture verse by verse without the actual doing of His Word.)
In looking back, I can see that my equally brilliant idea was to basically force feed. I felt so strongly about our kids learning Scripture that I would have force-fed them, had that been possible. Equal yikes!
Thirty years later, it seems so simple: We should have met in the middle.
And looking back, that’s basically what we did.
I was reading to our children from the “Beginner’s Bible” before they could walk. As they got older, I sifted through children’s Bible storybooks and threw out the many that were not accurate to God’s Word.
All of our children accepted Jesus as their Savior at a young age.
And why wouldn’t they?
Who wouldn’t want to be on the side of the God who parts the water and slays the giant; the One who created us, goes through the furnace with us, and has good plans for us now and into eternity?
Once our children were able to sit longer, I settled on “Egermeier’s Bible Story Book” first published in 1927. The book contains 312 stories from Genesis to Revelation, and each story was the perfect length for reading in one sitting.
When our children got older they read their own Bibles.
In the car and at home, I played Scripture set to music. Even now, there are Scriptures I can recall only upon singing!
Off and on through the years, I wrangled my husband into attempting Bible reading each morning with breakfast. Some of us have happy memories of this time together, which is nice. However, it never became consistent due to several factors, including the dependence on up to 10 of us gathering so early in the morning.
From time to time I would try Scripture memory programs. They never lasted.
Two things lasted the test of time:
- Reading aloud the Bible or Bible stories to our young children.
- Teaching our kids to read really well (another blog post) and having them read their own Bibles once they were old enough.
In my dreams, our children, my husband, and I read our Bibles aloud, sing hymns, and pray together all the time. That dream was a hard one to let go. But that is not who I married.
If this is who you married, and it’s your vision too, then good for you. If you and your husband agree on how to teach Scripture to your children, be thankful.
If you don’t agree, let me encourage you to find some workable middle ground, remembering that there is no perfect formula.