Yesterday I was creating the bulletin cover for the worship service 
and in looking for a verse to go with this photo.

A young friend from church

 I came across a verse that I was familiar with only from 
the King James version. 

"Train up a child in the way he should go 
and when he is old he will not depart from it".
Proverbs 22:6
But my search was in the NIV.
It sounds different in this version.
At least to me.

"Start children off in the way they should
go and even when they are old they will not 
turn from it."

The message is the same but the visual image to me is very different.
The KJV has always given me the mental image of a mother
sitting with her child and sharing truths or listening intently to 
what they are saying.
There is more of an image of love and even discipline invoked 
for me here.

Source - Rising Star Art

The NIV makes me think of something a bit more
along the physics train of thought.
I think of the old fashioned hoops and sticks
that you see from the colonial times.
When one wants to play with those it is important
that they start upright and very straight.
If not they will quickly veer to the right or to the left and 
they will topple over.
How the hoop starts rolling totally impacts the end results of 
this game.  And not only must it start well but the person
with the stick must stay with it because that hoop is going
to drift.  Gentle corrections are required or that hoop is 
going to be off course and then eventually fall
to the ground.

Our children need our presence, our attention 
and our correction.
I am not saying that we need to hit them with sticks.
For sure.
My grandma used that approach and it didn't train
me about anything other than fear.
What I am saying is that we must spend time with them.
Nurture them.
 Instruct their little hearts and minds in the ways of the Lord.

Source - GBMB Designs

I get to see parenting in a new way 
now that my three are nearly grown.  
I'm watching the young parents at our church.
They work so hard.
When one of their children starts to get a little bit off course
they take them aside and invest a few minutes in 
correcting the behavior in conversation and instruction.
Sometimes that instruction involves punishment.
Its all part of the process.

I have also observed a young mother who does not use this 
approach.  She came from a poor parenting situation herself and 
does not yet know the importance of all of these truths.
I am not so fond of spending time with her child.
We are praying for this young mother that she would come
to know Jesus and then become
open to some leading and guidance herself so that her 
little one would get that right start.

Aren't you glad that our Heavenly Father has 
demonstrated this style of caring and instruction with us?
That gentle whisper of the Holy Spirit who deals with our 
hearts when we begin to stray.
The Word He has given us and the ability to 
be in His presence
and learn directly from His heart.
It is all so good.

Becky Keeney
Good Neighbors Candle Co.

Comments (5)

On July 16, 2012 at 8:33 AM , bananaorangeapple said...

What a lovely message. Thank you.

On July 16, 2012 at 10:23 AM , ZudaGay said...

There are so many parenting styles and some work very well...some are definitely sending their children on a wobbly path. Your little friend is so adorable!!

On July 16, 2012 at 9:14 PM , MYSAVIOR said...

They say that hindsight is 20/20. I was looking back on the days when my girls were being nourished both physically and spiritually. I wish I had it to do over. Those "wonder" years are soooo important.


On July 17, 2012 at 11:11 AM , Joyce Butler said...

A needed message in these times when people don't understand this value.

On July 18, 2012 at 3:33 PM , Anonymous said...

In my own search for parenting skills the Lord, lead someone into my life that helped me to understand, I cannot give what I do not have. Wisdom begins with the fear of the Lord, when we learn from His Word how we are to walk in our own lives, we can turn around and teach that to our children in words and deeds. We can parent our children by how we learn to be a child of God. The Lord will impart wisdom to us as we draw from His Word and His Spirit. It is so important to have this as a legacy. When it is missing in the foundations of our upbringing, we must allow the Lord to rebuild a foundation of truth from His Word and Spirit. This is what the difference was in how I learned to parent my own children. Often it is met with ridicule because it does not look like the world and its ways, yet today, I have people who will come up to me and asked how did I raise such faithful children. During the years of their growing up, I was told I was too strict, to over protective, too. . . Yet today those same people are asking for my advice, its not mine but the Lord’s. I am so overjoyed at the lives my children now live, as the proof of the pudding of God’s way, is the better way.
Mrs. J.