Teach the Children

Jacob and Lucas, welcome to St. Norbert

In a recent Harvard study, researchers discovered that U.S. Christianity is growing stronger. We are, after all, still “one nation under God.” With all the divisions and confusion, we are remaining steadfast in our beliefs. If you attend church more than once a week, believe in the Word of God, “The Bible,” and pray, you develop an unwavering strength. According to this study, our country enjoys “persistent and exceptional intensity” with religion.

God gave us a intellect to discern and search for truth. Attending church helps families because Jesus is in the ministry of keeping families together. This includes single parents, who can also experience the same benefits when the family is ingrafted into a solid Bible-based church. If God blessed you with children, it is your responsibility before God to give your children the gift of understanding the positive benefits of being raised with a belief in God. In order for a child to experience a balance in life, he must be taught early on how to pray. Children must be taught that they have a family in God. As parents it is your duty to instill these golden nuggets early on in life. Whatever you share about God stays in their little spirits. If a child is lacks teaching about God, statistics clearly state that he will walk away because his  faith is weak. How can we expect children to hold on to things that they were never taught?

Jacob and Lucas praying before the Blessed Sacrament

Do you want your children to be happier and healthier? In another Harvard study from the T.H.Chan School of Public Health, researchers found that people in their 20’s attending religious services or praying daily in their youth reported greater satisfaction and positivity in life. This report followed 5,000 youth in a span between 8-14 years. This study analyzed variables such as   maternal health, socioeconomic status, and a history of substance abuse or depressive symptoms. People (ages 23-30) who attended regular church services at least once a week in childhood and adolescence,  reported 18% higher happiness as young adults than those who did not attend religious services. They were 33% less likely to use illicit drugs, and 29 % were more likely to volunteer. These statistics are not surprising to me because when you put others before yourself, you understand the Christian role of servanthood. You are too busy serving God and doing God’s work to get caught up in drug abuse and the problems that come with not serving God.

Psalms 119:9 (NKJV ) How can a young person stay on the path of purity? By living according to Your word.

Those who prayed or meditated on a daily basis were 16% more likely  to report being happier as young adults. When there is a balance of God in the lives of our youth, they are 30% less prone to having sex at a young age. Forty percent of young adults who pray regularly  did not suffer sexually transmitted diseases.They do not suffer from low self-esteem or cave into peer pressure, because they are equipped with the Spirit of God as their guide.

When I taught Release Time Christian Education (a Bible-based program for public schools) I was amazed that more parents did not take advantage of the program. It was important for me to instill into the fourth-grade and fifth-grade students that they could get through life better with prayer. From my twelve years of teaching, I know that their little lives were altered for the better, because the Word of God was etched in their souls.

Junior was a fifth grader who had recently lost his mother. When I was walking the children back to class, Junior pulled me aside to tell me that he was having suicidal thoughts. I prayed with him and reported the incident to the principal of the school. I thank God for this program that made such a difference in Junior’s life. In another instance, the Lord revealed to me that a fourth-grade student was being emotionally abused, and she requested special prayer. Other students shared personal accounts with me, and I directed them to God and prayed for their needs. Some students had mothers with cancer, some had close relatives in prison, and they were operating in fear of the unknown. God’s comforting words guided all their uncertainties. Programs like Release Time have been around for over 60 years, and they remain focused on training children the way they should go.

Isaiah  40: 30-31 (NKJV)

30 Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall;31 but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.

My Prayer:

Dear Lord, help all parents understand the importance of Your teaching in the lives of their children. Allow them to see that only You, Lord, who can make a difference. Be the light for all families seeking direction. May Your divine mercy fall on all those who are struggling in raising rebellious children. Be their guide in their hour of darkness, and bring all souls into heaven, especially those in most need of Your mercy. Amen.

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