I remember when my son was in preschool. One day I picked him up, he jumped in the car and said, “We learned about respect today in chapel.”
“That’s awesome! What did you learn about it?”, I asked.
“Well, it’s a long story”, he replied.
I could not have said it better myself.
That title seemed fitting because we are still traveling through the chapters of Genesis reading about Jacob and Joseph’s story. Last week we discovered that as Jacob neared the end of his life, he was growing in his relationship with God. This week, in chapter 48, we see more evidence of that with many blessings and knowledge of what will come.
When Joseph saw his father placing his right hand on Ephraim’s head he was displeased; so he took hold of his father’s hand to move it from Ephraim’s head to Manasseh’s head. Joseph said to him, “No, my father, this one is the firstborn; put your right hand on his head.” But his father refused and said, “I know, my son, I know. He too will become a people, and he too will become great. Nevertheless, his younger brother will be greater than he, and his descendants will become a group of nations.” He blessed them that day and said “In your name will Israel pronounce this blessing: ‘May God make you like Ephraim and Manasseh.’” So he put Ephraim ahead of Manasseh. (v. 17-20)
How incredible that God allowed Jacob to not only see his son, Joseph, once again but to meet his grandchildren and bless them. I’m sure Jacob wished he could stick around longer to lead, guide and show his grandsons about God and teach them the lessons it took him so long to learn himself. This reminded me of how important it is to always continue teaching my own children about God, no matter how old they get or how much they seem to be ignoring me.
Teaching, guiding and directing our children about God isn’t something we should ever cross off our list. It’s a long story that we should never stop telling them or others. We are called to do so and we can’t let this responsibility fall to the side or leave for someone else to do.
Fix these words of mine in your hearts and minds; tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Teach them to your children, talking about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates, Deuteronomy 11:18-20
We are to live, share, teach and constantly think about the Words of the Lord and share them with our children. This takes time, thought, work, study, and love. Love for the Lord and love for our children and others. It is easy to let this job/responsibility get lost in the busyness of life.
My godchild asked me once if God was magic. She couldn’t understand how He was able to live in her heart, her mom’s heart and lots of others people’s heart’s unless there were hundreds of God’s. A lot of important things happened for her to find out the answers. First, she asked the question. This shows her heart for God. Second, her parents helped her find the answers. Third, I responded with scripture and her parents followed through with more discussion.
It’s a long story! Don’t miss the opportunity to share the Lord with a child? I encourage you to look for an opportunity every day this week to share a thought or Word about God with your children, grandchildren, nieces or nephews. I’m praying God will open the door and give us all the opportunity and when He does that we are willing and open to sharing truth and love.