I’m sure you remember it well…
Frozen was released, and within days, every.single.little.girl in the world (and in many cases, their mamas, too!) knew the lyrics to every.single.song on the soundtrack.
Let it go….Let it go…
Sure it does! That song and Do you want to build a snowman? has played over and over again in our heads, and at times, many of us wondered if we would ever be able to shake it.
For some reason, Frozen grabbed the attention of kids everywhere, and from what I can tell, it still hasn’t let go. Get it? Sorry.
Anyway, the whole phenomenon got me thinking…
What if our kids were as passionate about the Bible as they are about their favorite Disney movie?
What if our kids knew the Bible as well as they know their favorite soundtracks?
What if WE were as passionate about teaching our kids about the Bible as we are about dressing them up in their Elsa, Anna, and Olaf costumes and rushing them off to Chick-fil-a to meet their beloved character of choice?
You see, mamas and daddies, we are slacking BIG TIME! We are fostering an enthusiasm for all-things make-believe, yet failing to model any enthusiasm at all for bringing our children face-to-face with the way, the Truth, and the life. We have set the Frozen songs to play on repeat, yet our children aren’t spending any time at all memorizing God’s very personal words to them. We are dressing them up, taking them out, standing in lines, spending our money on all kinds of things…and I can’t help but wonder if all of these not-so-terrible things that we have come to associate with being a good parent aren’t keeping us distracted from the one thing that matters more than anything else.
Why aren’t our children excited about the Bible? Why aren’t our kids passionate about memorizing Scripture? Why don’t our teenagers have an interest in reading God’s messages to them? Could it be – in great part – because of us?
…because we are not excited about the Bible?
…because we are not passionate about memorizing Scripture?
…because we don’t have an interest in reading God’s messages to us?
Be honest. Gulp.
They know. They know where our priorities lie. They know where our focus is centered. Why? Because our actions speak far, far louder than any words we might say.
Sure, we might take our kids to church – checking that to-do off our Christian-Parent Checklist – but what does the rest of our week’s schedule communicate to them?
Sure, we might tell them God has a plan for their life – saying all the things a godly parent is supposed to say – but are we teaching them how to search the Scriptures to find answers when they need very specific direction?
Sure, we might make them memorize their verses for school, or church, or whatever extra curricular program they might be attending (all awesome things!), but are they seeing (really seeing!) the reality of Christ working in our lives?
I’m afraid Satan has successfully distracted all of us! He has given us a passion to read every new release at the Christian book store – keeping us from the one book where we all need to be abiding most. A number of Christian authors have our loyalty…yet we’ve left our Savior in the dust. We haven’t meant for it to happen this way, but it has.
Have you ever set down with a book and marked pages, made notes, highlighted multiple sections, etc. because you simply couldn’t get enough of what the author was saying or how they were saying it? Oh my goodness, I’m like that sometimes – especially when I’m reading a book about organization…or a book about how to be more patient with my kids. I am crazy about all things organizing, and I am passionate about growing in how I respond to the ones I love most; and I’ll never forget the moment when while reading a book that I knew was going to impact me in a number of positive ways, God whispered in my ear, Elizabeth, I wish you read my book this way. Ugh! Smack.in.the.face. You see, it had been a long time since I had sat down with my Bible and read in such a ravenous way, and while I may have appeared to have it together, the deepest parts of my heart were craving something far different than the self-help book I was devouring.
Our God is a jealous God…He longs to spend time with us.
Don’t let the word jealous scare you…Look at it in a positive way! He is a friend that wants to BE with us. I love that. He has so much He wants to communicate to me, and believe it or not, He wants me to communicate with Him. How amazing is it that He offers us a two-way street? Just like any good friend!
However, this relationship can not happen if I am not spending time in His Word. Satan has busied us and led us to believe that there are replacements for real time in the Bible – church, book clubs, a meaningful phone call with a friend – and while all of these can be good things, they can not take place of our sitting down and allowing God to change us through His Word.
It may sound old-fashioned…cliche’…maybe even a little cheesy…but here’s where I’m at:
When I spend time in God’s Word – reading, meditating, praying – I come away changed. Every.single.time, I walk away a different person than when I approached. The Bible has a transforming power that nothing else does, and when I experience that, I feel frustrated that I have spent so much time away. I feel a certain anger that I have allowed Satan to keep me so distracted (once again, sometimes with good, good things) that I have neglected life-changing time with the One who loves me this I know.
When we choose wisely, our kids will notice! Our kids will witness God’s power in our lives, and it will bring them face-to-face with the reality that God wants to do incredible things in their life as well.
How did those little girls learn those songs from Frozen so quickly? They heard them over and over again! Let’s apply the same principle to immersing our families in God’s Word, and I believe God will do amazing things in our homes as we actively seek to turn our hearts toward Him. Satan is not going to like it…and you can count on Him doing everything He can to keep you from being successful in your desires to keep your family at the feet of Jesus, but fix your eyes on the Savior as He does not fail and continue to be challenged with this question:
What would happen if our kids REALLY knew the Bible?
The honest truth is that encouraging your family in this way might feel little awkward at first…especially if it’s a habit that has been neglected for awhile or something your family has never done, but go for it…and keep going…and let God remove the awkwardness and replace it with…well, He knows what your family needs, and He will provide it. How do I know? Because His promises are true.