Tonight, I had an interesting discussion with my kids, well, one in particular, but the others were in and out of the conversation. In the conversation my now six year old son made the comment about how he didn’t know God’s laws. You know, in a lot of ways, this kind of jolted me because I realized that my son needed to be taught and wanted to be taught and I had been failing him. I hadn’t intended to, but I had.
My kids and I have been reading the Old Testament together, almost faithfully, a chapter each night. I’ve known lots of scripture and Bible stories, but I’d never read the Old Testament all the way through before. I had tried, but the last time I tried to read it I couldn’t make it past 2 Kings–there was so much blood and gore and wickedness it made me sick. I just couldn’t handle it any more, so I decided to read other scriptures instead.
My parent’s have really gotten interested in their “Israelite roots”, and in order to get to your “Israelite roots” you have to know the world of the Old Testament. I’ve learned a lot from my papa about our Israelite roots and my parents observe the Feasts, as they are called, and I’ve participated in a lot of them. I’ve learned so much from incorporating what my father has shared with me. A lot of what my father has shared with me comes a lot from the Jewish teachings and perspective, because at this time they are the only tribe of Israel that is acting like a tribe of Israel–in the Old Testament sense. There is so much there. I cannot adequately express this.
My parents sharing so much with me, put a fire in my soul to understand the world of the Old Testament. I craved the Old Testament, like food. For a while, even though I was reading with my kids, I would read on my own up ahead of them and I would devour several chapters in one sitting. As we read the Old Testament, the New Testament began to make more sense in places. I understood why Jesus told the people he healed not to say anything but to “go and make themselves known to the priests” and offer their sacrifices. That was witness enough to what He had done, and pure humility. So many things have come alive to me while we’ve been reading.
I hadn’t realized in all our reading and my own discovery and feasting that my son had been getting lost and was missing things. How much of my discussions with his big brother during scripture time just went over his head? I have no way of knowing.
When he told me that he didn’t know God’s laws, I had the thought to share with him the Ten Commandments laid out in Exodus. The language in my King James’ Version isn’t the language he’s used to; so I had to read, then explain in his layman terms to help him understand some of them, but it was good to sit down and hash it out with him.
At one point he said that he doesn’t always understand what we read when we do scriptures and I encouraged him to ask me questions. I love legitimate and sincere questions out of a wondering heart. Questions are fuel for great discussions! I cannot say how many wonderful, amazing and awesome conversations I have had due to one good question (which usually leads to at least a few more). He was willing to do that, and I think that will help us both, give us a new starting place.
After our conversation I came to the realization how much more effort I need to put into teaching my kids about God’s laws, straight from His word, and making sure they understand it. I have so much to learn and sometimes I feel inadequate, but that is my responsibility, right and privilege as his mother to teach him. I hope I can do it well.
~Thoughts From a Mother’s Heart