Thursday, August 30, 2012

Parenting from Proverbs: Avoiding Evil

Proverbs 4:14-17:

Do not enter the path of the wicked, And do not walk in the way of evil.
Avoid it, do not travel on it; Turn away from it and pass on.
For they do not sleep unless they have done evil; And their sleep is taken away unless they make someone fall.
For they eat the bread of wickedness, And drink the wine of violence.
But the path of the just is like the shining sun, That shines ever brighter unto the perfect day.
The way of the wicked is like darkness; They do not know what makes them stumble.
My son, give attention to my words; Incline your ear to my sayings. Do not let them depart from your eyes;
Keep them in the midst of your heart; For they are life to those who find them, And health to all their flesh.
Keep your heart with all diligence, For out of it spring the issues of life.
Put away from you a deceitful mouth, And put perverse lips far from you.
Let your eyes look straight ahead, And your eyelids look right before you.
Ponder the path of your feet, And let all your ways be established.
Do not turn to the right or the left; Remove your foot from evil.

I need to teach my children to be like the blessed man of Psalm 1 who turns from every way and path of evil and sin. Psalm 1:1-2: “Blessed is the man Who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly, Nor stands in the path of sinners, Nor sits in the seat of the scornful; 2 But his delight is in the law of the Lord, And in His law he meditates day and night.” I need to teach my children to recognize evil by having a knowledge of God’s Word. However, beyond teaching my children to recognize evil, I must teach them avoid it, to not engage in  it, to not even “stand in the path of sinners, nor sit in the seat of the scornful.” They need to know the danger of even being near evil and sin and the destructive influence those things can have on their life. Instead, I need to guide them to fill their hearts with God’s Word – with a life that embodies the thoughts of Philippians 4:8: “Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things.” I need to instruct them to “ponder the path of [their] feet.” They need to understand that God has blessed us with the opportunity to choose our paths, and that we need to choose the path that follows God. I must guide them to “keep their heart with all diligence” and to “let [their] eyes look straight ahead” so that they learn to live lives obedient to God.

More Parenting from Proverbs