What’s The Bible Say About Connecting
“Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it.”
At first glance, it is easy to see that God is affirming “the way” that is right for us to follow, in general. And that would be correct, because the word “train” was the Hebrew word “hanak” and would be best translated “dedicate.” But there is a deeper treasure here.
The Hebrew word for way used in this verse was “derek.” Literally, it means “my way” or “bent.” It was a Hebrew marksman’s term. Marksmen of that day and age did not receive a standard issue bow and arrow with wires and buttons to adjust the bow to the specific environment. Rather, each marksman went out and found his own piece of wood, and crafted it carefully into a bow. Since each bow was made of different kinds of wood with varying strengths and levels of moisture, it was likely that it took hours and days to actually learn the unique “bent” or tendency of the wood so that a marksman could be accurate with it. The word “derek” refers to the process of learning the wood.
What I think God is saying to you and to me is this: “I’ve got a specific way that I’d like you to dedicate your child to follow, but to be successful you’ve got to know the unique strengths and qualities of your child. And by the way, that’ll take some time. So plan on investing it.
What a task we have as parents.
Not only do we need to know and absorb God’s moral value system, but we’ve got to be students of our children—learning their unique “bent”’—so that we can impart those values in creative ways that will impact your child according to their unique differences.
Action Point: Learn something new about your child today.
Dannah Gresh is the best-selling author of Six Ways To Keep The Little In Your Girl and Six Ways To Keep The Good In Your Boy (Harvest House). Both books provide practical advice on how to become a connecting mom in an effort guide your children from their tweens to their teens with a value system that reflects God.