I often wonder how much influence I really have on my children and their faith. Am I really leaving a godly legacy? Does my private life impact their spiritual lives? Do my children really believe what I teach them? How has God's Word impacted their lives?
Having been an educator for nearly 17 years, understanding child development should be second nature for me. Sometimes the contrary is true, especially when it comes to spiritual things. It never occurred to me that many of the same techniques I have used in the classroom have worked in cultivating my children's spiritual development. Many childhood experts agree that children are typically who they are going to be by age 6. To some degree, I agree with this concept. When my children were born, I wanted them to have a better life than I did. I wanted to give them everything. Most of all, I wanted them to grow up in a God-fearing environment.
My children often see my husband and me pray, together and individually. They witness each of us spending time reading the Bible and they hear what we say about God and his character. I never knew how much of a sponge my daughter was until I was in a very difficult trial. My daughter was about 3 years old at the time. I was in the bathroom having a "woe is me" moment. My sweet little toddler came into the bathroom and said, "Mama, God is faithful." "Out of the mouths of babes" was surreal at that moment. I looked up from the floor and she was gone. I went through the house to look for her, and I found her playing as if she had not just rebuked me for forgetting about the character of our awesome God.1