Posted by: amyedwards | January 15, 2008

Good or Godly?

I’ve recently given much thought to the question, “Are we raising our children to be good or godly?”  I must admit that before now, I hadn’t really thought about the significant difference.  Do we want our children to make the right choices because it will save them from harm, keep them out of trouble, make us look better as parents, give them better futures, etc.?  Or do we want them to make the right choices because they have a loving Father who sent his only Son to die and give them everlasting life?  That those right choices draw them closer to a Father who loves them so much and desires a relationship with them?

I can honestly say that in my heart I have desired them to make good choices for both reasons.  The problem is, I don’t think I’ve done a very good job of conveying to them that we do what is right out of a love for God and a desire to please Him.  It’s been more about rules and consequences in our home!

I’ve said before that I want to teach my children that it is more about relationship than religion.  The particular religious denomination I grew up under was more about hell, fire and damnation coupled with guilt than it was about God’s overwhelming love, grace and desire for me to grow close to Him. 

Don’t get me wrong, Obviously, faithfulness to church, sending your child to a Christian school, etc. all benefit your children.  But I would rather them have a “heart” knowledge of God, than an overwhelming “head” knowledge.  

I’ve been studying Deuteronomy 6:4-9 (“Hear, O Israel:  The Lord our God, the Lord is one!  You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength.  And these words which I command you today shall be in your heart.  You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up.  You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes.  You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.”)

I do believe that eternal truths are most effectively learned in the loving environment of a God-fearing home (taken from the notes in my study Bible.)  So, I’m asking for your input.  What are some practical ways you are diligently teaching God’s Word to your children?  How are you making God’s truths be a part of daily life in your home?  I welcome your input and suggestions.



  1. “I don’t think I’ve done a very good job of conveying to them that we do what is right out of a love for God and a desire to please Him. It’s been more about rules and consequences in our home!”

    I feel convicted because I think I’ve sometimes been guilty of the same thing with my kids. Particularly as the older ones are becoming young women, I think we’ve been out of balance in teaching them to make right choices from a heart for God and not just to have a brighter future. This was a great post. Thanks amy!

  2. I believe the best way is to MODEL it and to talk, and listen to, your children. Get into their hearts and out of their face. (I borrowed that-ha,) Talk about God’s word all day long and how it helps you make decisions.

  3. I’m like you and Terry. Convicted! I don’t know the best way other than to remember, it’s not about me (my rules) but about Him. Why do we have the guidelines we have? Just because our parents and grandparents did? Or are there biblical reasons? Figure it out and share them with the kids when they are making good and/or bad choices.

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