Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it. Proverbs 22:6
Grandma used to say, "Children sleep well because they have a clean conscience."
That was a nice thought, even though it's pretty bad theology. At any rate, many of our little ones do seem to sleep soundly.
Although Dr. Dorothy Bruck of Victoria University in Australia would say that though sound sleep is "usually a good thing ... there are times when that blessed gift can be dangerous."
Having studied 123 children who were under age nine, Dr. Bruck found out that when a fire alarm went off in their home only half the children woke up ... only half of that group recognized the sound as a fire alarm ... and only half of that group knew the sound meant they should get out of the house.
Dr. Bruck is encouraging parents to make sure their children are educated as to what they should do in an emergency and especially when the alarm goes off.
I agree in regard to matters spiritual as well as dangers physical.
I can sadly recall the number of parents who used the church on Sunday morning as a baby-sitting service. The adults dropped their children off for Sunday school, but they never came in themselves. They went home, read the paper, went out for breakfast, ran some errands.
They never visited with their children about what they had learned or why it was important.
Not surprisingly, when those children were confronted by some difficult life situations, they didn't recognize those difficulties as being dangerous -- nor did they know what to do.
Maybe that's why the Lord encouraged us to train up our children in the way they should go. The Lord wanted His veteran Christians to lovingly, faithfully and regularly impart some of their knowledge to the generations which came after them.
He wanted us to warn our young ones of the dangers which come from the world and the devil. He wanted us to teach them that Jesus was the child's best Friend and most faithful help.
To that end, we pray.
THE PRAYER: Dear Heavenly Father, I give thanks that Jesus has always been there for me. Now may I -- and my congregation -- do all we can to train our children. Help us make them aware of life's dangers and let us share the solution to those dangers which is found only in the Savior who gave His life so we might have life both here and in eternity. In His Name. Amen.
In Christ I remain His servant and yours,
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries