By Joyce Herron – Founder of Trinity Christian School, Lubbock, Texas
In a couple of months, I will be 90 years old. As I look back and ponder more than 42 years in education, growing up in a family of eight, coaching at a family coaching center, and time spent with my own family, I asked myself, “What are the most important things we should teach our children?” I came up with four things that I learned from some very wise teachers.
WHO GOD IS – I hired a seasoned teacher who taught “The Attributes of God” to students and parents. One day, several moms came to me and said, “Miss Bussey is a great teacher, but she has taught The Attributes of God so many times. Could she teach something else?” Miss Bussey looked me straight in the eyes and said, “You tell those moms when they learn The Attributes of God, I will teach them something else.” That was in the late seventies. Now with their own children, many of those students have come to me and asked that The Attributes of God (more than any other subject) be taught to their children at Trinity Christian Schools.
WHO THEY ARE IN CHRIST – Coach Archie Warwick, who taught Bible, always had his freshman class memorize Psalm 139. Each one had to deliver it in front of the class. Many of those students attended his funeral. They spoke of the importance of that specific chapter, what it meant as they were growing up, and how they were teaching it to their own children.
HOW TO BE SAVED – My grandmother passed in 1933. I was only two years old, but I have heard for 90 years, “Grandmother Dora Lee rules the Donaldson Clan from her grave.” When my dad passed, he gave me her Bible and a letter she left to be passed on to future generations. It included instructions on how to be saved. I have distributed that letter at every family reunion since my dad gave it to me. We must teach our children that we are only passing through this life.
When my daughter, LeAnne, was only two weeks from passing, she said to family and friends, “I am ready, I am ready, I am ready. I am more peaceful than I have been in my entire life.” Those words from my daughter’s lips have brought me so much peace. We must teach our children that Jesus gave His life for them and, by teaching one generation after the other, assure them of their eternal home with Jesus.
CONFIRMING ONE’S CALLING AND ELECTION – The Word of God is the best teacher when it comes to teaching children about their valuable place in the Body of Christ: “For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, mutual affection; and to mutual affection, love. For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ (2 Peter 1: 5-8).
President Eisenhower said, “The urgent is seldom important, and the important is seldom urgent.” In my nine decades, it is more apparent to me than ever what things are essential, especially for our children.
“Father, in the name of Jesus, I pray and confess your Word over my children and ask that You instill in them great faith in Your Word. I know that You, Father, will perfect that which concerns me (Psalm 138:8).”