Your children are watching and learning from you
1 Kings 15:2,3 -
Three years reigned he in Jerusalem. And his mother's name was Maachah, the daughter of Abishalom. And he walked in all the sins of his father, which he had done before him: and his heart was not perfect with the LORD his God, as the heart of David his father.
How many a times have I come across parents who keep complaining about their children being mischievous, not studying, not paying attention for more than 5 minutes etc... Most of the time I keep the child out and instead of speaking or praying over the child start counseling the parents.
Children are like fresh clay on a potter's wheel. Like our Father is our potter, we too are potters to our children. It is how we handle them and what we teach them that determines what they become.
Children by nature go less by what we talk and more by what they see us we do. Visual training is considered the fastest and best way of teaching. Most people have a photographic memory and instantly recollect what they saw, especially children. Children will give you details which you did not even notice. Any event that disturbs them gets etched onto their minds. Undoing them is most difficult and therefore it is best to avoid doing it in the first place; prevention is better than cure.
In today's scripture we read Abijam who was weak in heart saw the sinful ways of his father Nebat and followed him. We also read the name of his mother given as Maachah which means 'oppression'. So much so was the effect of his mother on him that she had an incestuous relationship with him and gave birth to a child Asa who later became king. But we see Asa was strong in heart for he cut himself from his parents, not following them but followed David as an example and was blessed.
When a child is weak in heart and has a father who openly sins before him and a mother who oppresses the child, then what can one expect of the child. Lord too understood this and therefore it is written he slept with his fathers.
This same message goes to spiritual leaders or spiritual fathers. The Lord instructed Israel not to make steps to climb to the altar and but slopes, so that the children of Israel do not see the nakedness of the spiritual leaders.
We are the altar of the Lord made of earth (Adam was made of earth and life was put into him) and stones (which symbolizes understanding - the Holy Spirit is called the Rock because He is perfect Truth and understanding). God never really gave importance to any structure made by man nor did his glory dwell there long. God always needs a perfect structure to dwell in for He is perfect and that perfect structure is man made in his image.
Steps symbolize high increase of great desire to progress. God gives us the increase and it is He who lifts us or glorifies us. When we try to work towards our increase or try to glorify us we are climbing steps. God instructs spiritual leaders not to expose this nakedness of theirs to their congregations or spiritual children. If they do they will be inviting the wrath of God.
Even oppressing the people of God for personal glory like not letting a person go to another congregation where they person has more comfort for better fellowship or not letting so as to not lose the tithe income also invites the wrath of God on the leader.
God is more interested in his harvest, if the worker of the vineyard does not work in the interest of the harvest he or she becomes an enemy of the Lord and thus is judged first.
Be careful of what you show of yourself to your natural as well as your spiritual children, they are very dear to the Lord.
[ Prayer Starter ]
Lord God, we thank You for giving us such lovely children. We ask your forgiveness if we have shown our nakedness to them. Help us Lord to control our desires and our weaknesses especially when we are before our children. Protect our children even from us so that they give glory to You and lift your holy Name...
This prayer we make in Jesus' Name, Amen.
[ Reference Scripture ]
23 Ye shall not make other gods with me; gods of silver, or gods of gold, ye shall not make unto you.
24 An altar of earth thou shalt make unto me, and shalt sacrifice thereon thy burnt-offerings, and thy peace-offerings, thy sheep, and thine oxen: in every place where I record my name I will come unto thee and I will bless thee.
25 And if thou make me an altar of stone, thou shalt not build it of hewn stones; for if thou lift up thy tool upon it, thou hast polluted it.
26 Neither shalt thou go up by steps unto mine altar, that thy nakedness be not uncovered thereon.
1 Kings 15:1-14
1 Now in the eighteenth year of king Jeroboam the son of Nebat reigned Abijam over Judah.
2 Three years reigned he in Jerusalem. And his mother's name was Maachah, the daughter of Abishalom.
3 And he walked in all the sins of his father, which he had done before him: and his heart was not perfect with the LORD his God, as the heart of David his father.
4 Nevertheless for David's sake did the LORD his God give him a lamp in Jerusalem, to set up his son after him, and to establish Jerusalem:
5 Because David did that which was right in the eyes of the LORD, and turned not aside from any thing that he commanded him all the days of his life, save only in the matter of Uriah the Hittite.
6 And there was war between Rehoboam and Jeroboam all the days of his life.
7 Now the rest of the acts of Abijam, and all that he did, are they not written in the book of the chronicles of the kings of Judah? And there was war between Abijam and Jeroboam.
8 And Abijam slept with his fathers; and they buried him in the city of David: and Asa his son reigned in his stead.
9 And in the twentieth year of Jeroboam king of Israel reigned Asa over Judah.
10 And forty and one years reigned he in Jerusalem. And his mother's name was Maachah, the daughter of Abishalom.
11 And Asa did that which was right in the eyes of the LORD, as did David his father.
12 And he took away the sodomites out of the land, and removed all the idols that his fathers had made.
13 And also Maachah his mother, even her he removed from being queen, because she had made an idol in a grove; and Asa destroyed her idol, and burnt it by the brook Kidron.
14 But the high places were not removed: nevertheless Asa's heart was perfect with the LORD all his days.
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