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The Father as Children’s Pastor

July 20, 2010

Enjoy! Courtesy of TheResurgence.com

Here are some more thoughts from Tyson Paoletti, co-creator of the Rizers and manager at Tooth & Nail Records, on leading your family in worship and Scripture memory. Check out the Rizers’ music here.

Every Dad wants to raise children who will grow up to love Jesus. Parents tend to specifically seek out churches that have active kids ministries to lead their kids toward Jesus. However, according to the Bible, it is we parents—specifically dads—who have the primary responsibility for teaching our kids about God, not the church. The church is there to supplement what our kids should already be learning at home.

Scripture on a Dad’s Responsibility

Several months back I was able to look deeper at what the Bible has to say about my responsibility as a Dad.

  • “You shall teach [God’s words] to your children, talking of them when you are sitting in your house, and when you are walking in the way, and when you lie down and when you rise” (Deut. 11:19).
  • “…the father makes known to the children your faithfulness” (Is. 38:19).
  • “Make them known to your children and your children’s children” (speaking of the things that God has revealed) (Deut. 4:9).
  • “Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord” (Eph. 6:4).
  • “Which he commanded our fathers to teach their children, that the next generation might know them, the children yet unborn, and arise and tell their children, so that they should set their hope in God and not forget the works of God, but keep his commandments” (Psalm 78:5b-7).

There are hundreds of things that can get in the way of taking the time to sit with your kids and spend time learning the Word of God: lack of discipline, lack of experience, lack of a sense of importance, and many more. Sometimes it’s getting over the ideal that you might have in your head. There will be chaos, your wife will need you to do something, the dog will need to go out, your son will not think it’s cool at all—but those memories of parents who loved them enough to make an effort will leave a lasting impression on your kids’ hearts.

So Dads, parents—lets do this!

4 Tips for Teaching Your Kids to Memorize Scripture

  1. Set a Goal. Try one verse a week. This will allow you to dwell on that verse, apply it, and talk about it through the week. Not all the kids will learn at the same pace, so this will also allow some flexibility.
  2. Be Consistent. Figure out when, where, and what works for your family. Make it realistic: maybe it’s morning, or dinner time, or in the car on the way to and from school—or have them say their verse to you before you leave for work.
  3. Choose the Verses. Pick verses that make sense for your whole family to learn. You can even taper the verse to just a section for the younger kids.
  4. Make it Fun. SING SONGS! Repetition is key. So whatever way works for your family, have fun doing it and be creative.

Psalm 119:11 says “I have stored up your word in my heart, that I might not sin against you.” The Word of God is “living and active,” it’s “profitable for teaching, reproof, for correction and training in righteousness,” and it “does not return empty.”

Thank you God for your powerful Word. It’s life-changing, life-shaking, and I desire for it to penetrate not only my life, but the life of this amazing family you entrusted to me.

Check out The Rizers: a great resource for helping your kids memorize Scripture through fun, original worship songs. Listen to the Rizers here.

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