Having my daughter last spring has definitely changed my walk with Christ. Busy days come with sleepless nights and quiet moments are often broken with cute coos and not-as-cute cries (though I do think her cries can be cute). It extends to my experiences at church. No longer is the Sunday sermon a time where I get to sit and soak up the nuances and meanings in God’s Word. Now it’s a time of wrangling, toy-picking-up, and diaper changes. I expected and longed for these days.However, I know that God’s Word is a gift and the Holy Spirit will work through me to pass down the faith to my child. And you have the same honor with your children. Here are three Bible verses to quickly meditate on as we honor God and teach Jesus through our parenting.
Make a joyful noise to the Lord, all the earth;
break forth into joyous song and sing praises!
A few Sundays ago, my family sat in our normal pew. My husband and I handed back and forth our daughter as she wiggled. She was a bit energetic, so I handed her a teething toy shaped like a straw to play with. Well, that day she learned a new trick. She started humming and blowing air through the tube. My heart lept—it was adorable. I know we got some looks. This noise was during the sermon after all.
This is how my daughter participated in worship. Children make noise, especially little ones. You don’t want to disrupt, but there is a difference between struggle noises and joy-filled noises. It takes a bit of courage from God’s Word (and maybe a Busy Bag) to keep them in the sanctuary. Psalm 98 is all about making joyful noise. Because of His steadfast love and faithfulness to His people we sing and speak together during our worship services.
Our babies aren’t just the future of the church—they are the church right now. They belong—noises and all—in worship.
But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith?
During the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus speaks these words. The heading of this section in my ESV Bible is “Do Not Be Anxious.” As we finish my husband’s seminary journey, eagerly awaiting Call Day later this month, there is a lot to be anxious about. Maybe your family is on the precipice of big change as well? God will be there for us. Our plans and idea of what our lives will look like may fall to the wayside, but Jesus’ words are true. He will provide.
2 Timothy 1:5
I am reminded of your sincere faith, a faith that dwelt first in your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice and now, I am sure, dwells in you as well.
Looking at The Lutheran Study Bible notes for verse 5, Lois’ and Eunice’s names are Greek and not Jewish, meaning they have (at least) three generations of Greek cultural influence in the family. To quote the TLSB, these women, “both passed the faith to Timothy by reading and speaking the Word to him.”
That’s our job as parents. To speak boldly the truth of Scripture and to read the Word to our children. We know that God’s Word never returns void because the Holy Spirit is working through it. Christianity, or honestly religion in general, is not popular in this culture. Like Lois and Eunice, our families may have to work to undo the generations of cultural influence. This doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t engage with the culture surrounding us, but we should prayerfully ask the Lord to help us use wisdom in how we participate.
What an honor it is to raise little disciples of Jesus. I pray that you feel encouraged and ready to grow in God's Word as you nurture your children's faith.
With the April 2023 Everyday Faith Calendar, look at Romans 8 as a family to understand the vast love of God and celebrate the great victory found in Jesus.