From the writings of the Rev. Billy Graham
More critical than having a child christened is for parents to commit to raising their children according to the Word of God. The Bible says, “Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it” (Proverbs 22:6).
It is commendable for parents to want to establish their child’s life in the church. How can parents train their children if they don’t also train themselves in the truth of the Gospel and live by its provisions and instructions? When parents belong to Jesus Christ, He will equip them daily for this monumental task if they submit themselves to Him and follow Him in obedience. A Christ-centered home and foundation is important for children to grow physically, intellectually, and—most important—spiritually. Praying for guidance in finding a church home where the Bible is preached and where Christ is exalted is an important step in laying a solid foundation.
When parents set an example of consistency in discipline and guidance, it strengthens children. When parents show a lack of wisdom in choosing right friends for themselves, it will be difficult to help children choose right friends for themselves. If parents say one thing and do another, children will often “tune out.” Children can often spot hypocrisy immediately, and it can have devastating results as they grow. Children desperately need the guidance of parents. It is important for moms and dads to be firm and fair and above all, to discipline in a spirit of love. Be an example in word and deed and be consistent in your walk with Christ.
(This column is based on the words and writings of the late Rev. Billy Graham.)