“Watch over your heart with all diligence, for from it flow the springs of life.” Proverbs 4:23
The COVID-19 crisis can be especially frightening for kids. Not only have their daily lives changed, but they may also be aware of economic changes within your household. There’s never been a better opportunity to connect scriptural truth with real life. Kids need to know that relying on godly wisdom is a way of life, regardless of what’s happening around us.
Of course, each family has to decide how much information to share. But when you think about it, there are a handful of decisions in life that determine all of our other decisions. Wise parenting focuses on these foundational principles so our kids see the big picture for themselves.
Throughout Proverbs 4, we’ve seen Solomon instruct his children on the importance of gaining wisdom. Now, he describes how to make walking in wisdom a way of life. In verses 20-27, Solomon outlines three basic decisions for relying on godly wisdom and discernment.
Decision #1: Pay attention to wise counsel (vv20-22). As we teach our kids from God’s Word, they learn to recognize scriptural truth from other sources. They make it their own by listening carefully and allowing wise instruction to penetrate their hearts. Even though churches aren’t meeting right now, be sure to include your kids as you stream worship services. And check out the many biblically based children’s resources being offered free of charge online.
Decision #2: Diligently guard your heart (vv23-24). The affections of the heart chart each person’s course in life. What we teach our kids to care about determines how they think, believe, and behave. And, what’s in our hearts eventually comes out of our mouths (Matthew 15:18). Standing watch over your heart requires both effort and obedience. We teach by example when we protect our homes against anything steeped in worldly thinking. This is especially important during this time of isolation as our televisions are likely on more than usual.
Decision #3: Keep your focus on the Lord (vv25-27). As a general rule, our feet go in the direction that we look. It’s the same in our spiritual lives. When our eyes are fixed on Jesus (Hebrews 12:2), our steps are firmly set on the path of the righteous. Still, we watch carefully for anything that could trip us up. In a world full of distractions, it’s essential to teach children how to focus on the Lord and on the course He has laid out.
Helping our kids see the big picture requires authenticity and intentionality. So first, make sure these principles are in place in your life, personally. As a family, discuss how the truths of Scripture speak to any fears related to this health and economic crisis. Even during this difficult time, we can all learn to rely on godly wisdom as a way of life.