Hear O Israel, the LORD our God, The LORD is one. Love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments I am giving you today are to be upon your hearts, impress them upon your children. Talk about them as you sit at home and as you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them upon your foreheads. Write them on the doorframes of your houses and upon your gates. (Shema, Dt. 6:4-9)
I am the father of 6 children ages 5 months to 12 years. It is my heart’s desire to impress God’s love and desires upon them. I want them to find their place as participants in the missio dei, the mission of God. Beyond my own family, I want to partner with you. I hope to learn from you and pray that I might share something helpful with you as you seek to impress your faith upon your children. It is a daunting task, but one that we can no longer ignore. Faith doesn’t just happen, it must be nurtured in us and our children.
Over my next several posts I will be reflecting on the passage above, Deuteronomy 6:4-9, known as the Shema. These words were and are the daily prayer of Israel. It is safe to assume that Jesus uttered this prayer every day of his life. This is evidenced by his quoting it when asked about the “greatest command”. As a parent I challenge you to commit this prayer to memory. Say it with your children. We can talk more about it soon.
Until next time, may God bless you as you seek to impress faith upon your children as we bring them up together…