A lot of people have been busy around the house lately. With children home, some parents furloughed, and parks closed, lots of families have decided to take on a fun building project together - a backyard playground! But if you haven’t bought your kit yet, it may be too late! They are hard to find these days.
If you aren’t ready to take on a backyard building project, there is another project God is ready to help you with - building a healthy home! At Watermark, we are committed to help you with that project; and to do it, we are going to take a look at some amazing truths God has for us in Deuteronomy 6.
How can I build a healthy home (life)? The truth is that is it is far easier to demolish a home than to build a home. The demo can be difficult and dirty work, but sometimes it is necessary to remodel your home in the way God desires. Is there any behavior, practice, attitude in your home that needs to go? If so, tear it down, throw it out and start remodeling in a way that honors God! Challenge: Commit to building or rebuilding a healthy, God-honoring home (life)! (Read Deuteronomy 6:1-3)
This text is a powerful and clear directive to families… the overarching idea is to lay a strong foundation for my family (life). 2 so that you, your children and their children after them may fear the Lord your God as long as you live… Deuteronomy 6:2a. Jesus talked about how vital a solid foundation is for our lives. 24 “Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. Matthew 7:24
How do I lay a strong foundation for my family (and my life)?
1) Teach (Learn) God’s Word! These are the commands, decrees and laws the Lord your God directed me to teach you to observe in the land that you are crossing the Jordan to possess, Deuteronomy 3:1 As the Israelites made their way to their promised land, Moses wanted to make sure that they didn’t forget where they came from, the God who had led them and His instructions for them!
When seasons of life are hard, we naturally turn to God, which is a good thing! But when seasons of life are good, we tend to put Him on a shelf and forget about Him. God wants to make sure that we lean on Him, His Word, His commands no matter the seasons of life. Teaching (and learning) God’s Word is vital for laying a strong foundation in my family and my life!
2) Fear the Lord! 2 so that you, your children and their children after them may fear the Lord your God as long as you live by keeping all his decrees and commands that I give you, Deuteronomy 6:2a
What does it mean to fear the Lord? I like the way the great theologian Luther explains this. He says there are two kinds of fear. One kind is a fear we might have toward a tormentor or bully. Have you ever had a bully in your life? God is no bully and this is not the kind of fear the Bible is referencing.
To fear the Lord actually comes from the idea of family. This kind of fear is born out of the tremendous respect and love a child has for parents… one that desperately wants to please them, or to make them proud, or to honor them. In fact, the child does not fear punishment, but fears more disappointing their parents. This is what it means to “fear the Lord”… to deeply desire to honor Him with my life and my choices. As parents, we want our children to have this healthy desire in relation to us and we want to teach them to “fear the Lord” in this way too! (Proverbs 1:7)
How do I fear the Lord and teach my children to do the same? Read Psalm 34:8-14.
3) Obey God’s Word! 3 Hear, Israel, and be careful to obey…. Deuteronomy 6:3a.
Moses was not only concerned that they knew God’s commands, and that they feared Him, but that they put His Words into practice too! Jesus talked about how important this was as well! (Matthew 7:24ff)
I read somewhere that obedience is the supreme test of faith in God and reverence for Him. God calls us to faith and action. 22 Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. James 1:22.
Do your children know how important obedience is? Are you an obedient follower of Jesus? Are you a doer of the word?
Why should I lay a strong foundation in my home? Because it is worth it! Life goes well! … so that it may go well with you and that you may increase greatly in a land flowing with milk and honey, just as the Lord, the God of your ancestors, promised you. Deuteronomy 3:3b
God doesn’t promise that life will go perfectly with you, or that life will meet all your expectations, or that life will always go your way. To be clear, this is not heaven; it is earth and earth is an imperfect place made up of imperfect people… but when I am committed to laying a solid foundation - teaching (learning) God’s Word, fearing the Lord and obeying His Word, there is a payoff and a promise… Life will go well!
For much more, listen to Building a Healthy Family - Part 1 - Laying a Strong Foundation.