When my son turned five on Sunday, it made me stop and reflect on the impact he has had on my life during those years. I think back on the day he was born and the moments preceding his delivery, which makes me marvel at God’s graciousness and the miracle of birth.
I remember the day he took his first step and I’m intrigued by the intricacies of the brain and the growth process that transforms a baby into a toddler. I think about his first day at playschool, in particular the feeling of loss that engulfed me as I dropped him off and thank God for the little joys we experience that make life worth living. I remember the days he lay sick in the hospital and appreciate God for his gift of health and life and the little things we enjoy because our bodies function well.
I think about his hugs and smiles that brighten my day and encourage me after a stressful week. I look back on the last few years with my boy and I acknowledge his positive influence on me. Now, this makes me wonder just how much positive influence I have had on him.
Children are a gift from God—a special gift that should be treated well, helped to flourish, nurtured, and encouraged to blossom into who they are designed to be. Every child you meet, every child that comes into your life, is there for a reason and you should try to influence that child in a positive way.
Think about the children in your life right now, whether they are yours or someone else’s. How much of you would you like to see in them? Are you a role model for love, discipline, respect, virtue, and joy? Or are you showing them the opposite. Even Jesus had role models—good Christian parents who brought him to the temple to worship. And if Jesus needed that earthly influence, how much more do you think kids today need us?
You can’t allow the movies they watch, the songs they listen to, and the friends they make to be the voice of reason in their heads. You have to make the decision to be that voice, the one that speaks the truth and guides them along the path of righteousness.
No need to fret about how to be their guide; you’ve got a cheat sheet, a trainer’s manual, a sailor’s compass—the Bible. It has 66 books filled with the gospel truth about how to be a decent human being and to love other people. It’s got truths about being successful and what real success is all about. It has the code to decrypt this world’s programming language so these kids can successfully pilot their lives.
If you’re still unsure of how to be that influence and the voice of truth—just point them to the word of God. Make a decision today and positively influence all the little ones you meet every day.
“Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.” Proverbs 22:6