“You shall teach them to your children.” Deut. 11:19
Jesus ushered in a new and living way to meet with God. Spirituality was available to all. It moved from being the domain of priests and prophets to the hearts of all believers. The Holy Spirit and scripture are open to anyone who is thirsty for God, and access is not limited to church or a temple. With the priesthood of all believers, our home is a place to teach, pray, grow and experience God.
18 “You shall therefore lay up these words of mine in your heart and in your soul, and you shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. 19 You shall teach them to your children, talking of them when you are sitting in your house, and when you are walking by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise.
5 For every high priest chosen from among men is appointed to act on behalf of men in relation to God, to offer gifts and sacrifices for sins. 2 He can deal gently with the ignorant and wayward, since he himself is beset with weakness. . .7 In the days of his flesh, Jesus offered up prayers and supplications, with loud cries and tears, to him who was able to save him from death, and he was heard because of his reverence. 8 Although he was a son, he learned obedience through what he suffered. 9 And being made perfect, he became the source of eternal salvation to all who obey him, 10 being designated by God a high priest after the order of Melchizedek.
13 Jesus said to [the Samaritan woman at the well], “Everyone who drinks of this water will be thirsty again, 14 but whoever drinks of the water that I will give him will never be thirsty again. The water that I will give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” 15 The woman said to him, “Sir, give me this water, so that I will not be thirsty or have to come here to draw water.”
.23 But the hour is coming, and is now here, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father is seeking such people to worship him. 24 God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth.” 25 The woman said to him, “I know that Messiah is coming (he who is called Christ). When he comes, he will tell us all things.” 26 Jesus said to her, “I who speak to you am he.”
A child will repeat catch phrases to younger siblings that they have heard from their parents like “It will be OK, just wait a minute”, “No buy, no cry”, “That’s not a good choice”, or “I’m going to count to three.” They absorb our attitude towards authority, our values, and our perspective. All parents want the best for their children, and they often make sacrifices to give them opportunities that they never had growing up. A full schedule seems like good parenting, but is it meeting all their needs?
Jesus asked the Samaritan woman to draw water from the well. For her it was a physical act that she did every day; for Jesus it was an invitation to teach her about the “living water”. She could satisfy the body; He could satisfy the soul. In our effort to provide for our children, how much time do we give to providing for their spiritual needs?
My grandson prayed for his cousin who had a high fever. Before the prayer was finished, his mother received a phone call saying, “It’s going to be OK.” “See Daddy, we prayed and Jesus made him all better.” This child is learning that God exists and that He is the source of healing, comfort and hope. Our challenge is to invite God into our home through conversation, prayer and Bible reading so when the storms of life come, they know where to turn.
Lord, we are comfortable providing for the physical and social needs of our loved ones, but we often shy away from bringing you into our conversations. Help us to look for ways to nurture our spiritual needs. “We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express. And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints in accordance with God’s will.” Amen