Helmet of Salvation
When Paul enumerated the various parts of the armor of God in Ephesians 6, I don't think it was an accident
that he symbolized salvation as a helmet squarely placed on the Christian's head. Though salvation requires
a heart change, it starts with a knowledge and questioning of the things of God, and once received, it
covers the Christian from the top of his head down. As a parent, ensuring your child's salvation is the
highest goal you can hope to achieve. It is also the single, most important step you can take to protect
your child from pornography.
Unfortunately, you can no more make your child accept Christ than you can guarantee he won't become addicted
to pornography. But you can take actions that will help set the
stage for your child's acceptance of the One who loves him even more than you do.
While Sunday school and church camp are great, we can't leave our children's eternal destinies in the hands
of others. We must make a deliberate and thoughtful effort to impart our faith to our children. In fact,
God demands it.
Deuteronomy 6:6-7 (NKJV) says, "And these words which I command you today shall be in your heart. You shall
teach them [God's commandments, statutes, and judgments] diligently to your children, and shall talk of them
when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up."
Match your walk with your talk
Children are so frustrating. They'll ignore what you say and mimic what you do every time. Hmmm, maybe we
parents can turn that fact to our advantage.
Your children will learn a real, heartfelt faith if they see it in you on a daily basis. That doesn't mean
you can't ever show anger or make a mistake. It means you put God first in your life. Let them see you pray,
honor God with your speech, and read your Bible. Don't talk about being a Christian - be one.
If you drop the kids off at church and leave to run errands, what does that say about the emphasis you place
on church attendance? Your children will learn a lot about Jesus at church, but they'll learn more from
witnessing your commitment to God. Your genuine joy in attending church may spark their desire to know more
about this savior that is more important to you than playing golf or relaxing at home on Sunday.
God does not exist solely at church. Don't treat Him as if He does. I know some young people who rejected
their Christian upbringing simply because they felt they were forced to attend every church function available.
While we want to demonstrate the importance of corporate worship to our children, we do them a disservice if
we make that the focal point of our relationship with God. Instead, provide a balanced perspective of worship
that integrates God into your family's everyday lives.
Examples of things we can do to spark a flame for Jesus in our children are:
- Read the Bible together - Read selected Bible stories to younger children or read through the Bible in a
Year with older ones. Purchase a Bible study appropriate for the whole family and work through it or plan a
fun family devotional night each week, focusing on a single passage.
- Pray with your children - Talk to God not only during bedtime prayers and mealtime blessings but when your
child is anxious about a test, experiences hurt feelings, or needs forgiveness. Model an ongoing conversation
with a loving Father.
- Memorize scripture together - Hey, no one said this was going to be easy! Choose scriptures that show
God's love for His children or His plan for our lives and write them on index cards. Then you and your child
select places to post them (bathroom mirror, breakfast table, etc.) where you will spend a few minutes each
day. Make the memorization a competition or a goal with a prize. Be sure to include the Roman Road to Salvation
(Rom. 3:23, Rom. 6:23, Rom. 5:8, Rom. 10:9-10, Rom. 10:13).
Ultimately, salvation is between each individual and the Lord. Just like protecting your child from pornography,
you can only do so much to ensure that he will accept Jesus. While salvation won't make your child impervious
to porn, clothing your child with the armor of God will arm him with the most powerful weapon he could wield
against pornography's temptation.