Today’s Scripture: But Omri wrought evil in the eyes of the LORD, and did worse than all that were before him. And Ahab the son of Omri did evil in the sight of the LORD above all that were before him. 1 Kings 16:25, 30

My dad has a saying, “What you do, your kids will do in excess.” Because our children look up to us, they will imitate the behavior that they see. If they see us living in accordance to God’s Word, serving the Lord, and sharing the gospel with those around us, they will see the reality of our faith. However, if they see us criticizing the pastor, living hypocritical lives, and not caring about souls, they probably won’t care about the things of God either. When a child can look to his parents as spiritual examples, he can be better encouraged to serve the Lord, but when a child sees his parents disobeying God, he can learn to despise the things of God.

One of the illustrations my dad uses is with alcohol. Because alcohol is so addicting, if he were to have allowed it in his life, it could have ruined our family. Even if he would never have gotten drunk, it might have led one of his kids to drink. However, because he never allowed the first drink, I have never had the temptation to drink.

That’s not to put all the responsibility on the parents – the kids have a choice whether or not to serve God as well, but what they see in their parents can make a big difference. Most parents want the best for their children – they are willing to sacrifice in order to provide for, care for, and protect their children. Shouldn’t we also be willing to sacrifice when it comes to their spiritual wellbeing? Isn’t that the most important thing anyway?

Leading them in rebellion to God will not only hurt them, but will also cause heartache for ourselves when we see the results in their lives. However, we will have immense joy when we see them serve the Lord with all of their heart.

Pray for your children and serve God wholeheartedly, and you will be well on your way to leaving a Godly legacy for your family.

Devotional by Pastor Jim Scudder, Jr.