God loves to work across the generations. If you are the first in your family to come to Christ, God can start something brand new with you that is going to go far beyond you and touch generations yet to come.
Family life has never been easy. Most, if not all, Bible families were more or less dysfunctional, from Cain and Abel to Jacob and Esau to Joseph and his brothers to David and Bathsheba. Even Jesus’ family did not believe in Him and apparently tried to persuade Him to give up on His mission. But God did not give up on the idea of family and neither must we.
One of the problems in our culture today is that families so seldom eat together. This can be one of the practical steps to take toward strengthening family life-determining that at least once a day, we are going to make the sacrifices necessary to touch base with one another—to sit down, pray and eat together as a family. More important even than talking about prayer is praying your way through life’s crises with your family.
Our best devotional times were when we had an issue to deal with as a family. We’d look to the Word of God for guidance and we’d pull together in prayer to work our way through it. Sometimes it was after a sharp difference of opinion, and sometimes tears were shed on the way to a solution.
Our own personal prayer life is so important as we model our faith to our families. Our daughter Jennie sent my wife a beautiful Mother’s Day note one year. She shared a number of memories of her mom and concluded with this:
“My fond memory is of you praying and reading your Bible each morning, yet holding out your arms to me if I woke too soon and interrupted your time. I do the same with Beth (her daughter), because the greatest lesson you taught me is that loving your children unconditionally is prayer itself.”
Devotional times with our families are invaluable because they give a pattern of spiritual discipline to our children that will strengthen them in working out that discipline in their own lives and passing it on to their children.
Keep believing for your children’s salvation. God is faithful to His promise— for you and your household.
Paul A. Rader, The War Cry