If children see their father pray, they will learn to become praying people. If children see their father study his Bible, they, too, will understand the importance of the Word of God. If children see their father serving others with Christ’s love, they will also learn to serve others.
The Bible exhorts parents to “train up a child in the way he should go” (Prov 22:6). A large part of spiritually training children is in setting a godly example for them to imitate.
A husband is exhorted to model Christ-like behavior in all of his actions and relationships (Eph 5:1-7). If he will draw upon God’s grace, power and wisdom, he can truly grow in his ability to be a Christ-like example to his family.
LEADING THROUGH PRACTICAL INSTRUCTION
We have learned that a husband is to set the overall priorities and direction for his family. One of the top priorities is to lead the family spiritually through very practical means.
Deuteronomy 6:6, 7 gives some insight as to how this can be accomplished: “And these words which I command you today shall be in your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up.”
This passage instructs us to use every opportunity, at every moment, to communicate the truth, wisdom, love and life of God to our family. This can be done through:
- Regular times of family prayer and Bible reading. Encourage each family member to participate in some way. Even small children can pray or recite a small portion of Scripture. Everyone can join in a worship song together. All will grow in grace and faith as they learn to minister, share and pray.
- Praying together at meal times or before bed;
- Memorizing Bible verses as a family;
- Receiving communion together at home;
- Reminding our children often of God’s great love for them as we give them a hug.
Even in the normal course of daily life there will be many opportunities to communicate God’s love and truth to family members. A husband can:
- Pray with and for his wife each morning;
- Pray with the children as they leave for school, or for a need they might have;
- Talk to his children about God’s love for them, and His great plans for their lives;
- Tell them some of the fascinating stories of Scripture, or of a miracle God has done in his life or in another’s life. Testimonies are a powerful way to build your family’s faith!
A husband should pray and ask the Holy Spirit for creative ways to communicate the love and truth of God to his family. He can ask the Lord to help him become an effective spiritual leader in his home. God will answer!
Becoming a godly and spiritually mature man is never an easy task. The demands of ministry or a job, stress, fatigue, personal weakness or lack of discipline often conspire to defeat a man’s best intentions.