“Amaziah did what was right in the eyes of the LORD. In everything he followed the example of his father Joash.” 2 Kings 14:3
The life of a godly parent is a daily sermon.
It has been said, “The children of godly parents go to church every day!”
Never doubt for a moment, that genuine piety and eminent holiness are the first requisites for all parents. No parent can expect to influence their children for good, without themselves walking wisely and worthily in the narrow path of holiness.
Here may be seen the reason that sound faithful teaching in Sunday schools, has comparatively effected so little good. It is not the fault of the church–but in the home’s pernicious influence! The evil that is witnessed at home, more than counteracts the lessons learned at church!
It is the will of God that parents should exercise control over their children. They must command that which is right–and they must forbid that which is wrong. It was spoken to the praise of Abraham, that God knew that he would command his children after him to keep the way of the Lord. It was the overthrow of the house of Eli, that his sons made themselves vile–and he did not restrain them.
In Scripture children are compared to arrows–but all depends upon the direction given to the arrow by the hand that guides it.
They are compared to vine branches–but an unpruned vine will bear no fruit worth gathering. So it is written, “A child left to himself brings his mother to shame!”
In training their children, let parents begin early. Long before a child is two years old, it will know the meaning of an emphatic “No.” Even at that tender age, some measure of discipline may begin.
Yield not to the self-will or pettishness of a child. What you once say–let it be law. Without some special cause–do not turn from it. Especially punish lying and disobedience–they are the root of all that is evil.
Yet with firmness, be very gentle. Harshness is a cold wind, that nips in the bud the beginnings of better things in the heart. Byron’s character was ruined by the cruelty of a harsh and unfeeling mother.
Win your children by love. Draw, rather than drive.
Make home the happiest place in the world to them.
(George Everard, “A Blessing in the Family!” 1866)