“For out of the overflow of the heart the mouth speaks” (Matthew 12:34)
“But the things that come out of the mouth come from the heart” (Matthew 15:18)
Little Jonathan likes to sing his heart out. As he sings, my husband and I often look at each other and grin. I’ll often whisper, “We must be doing something right.”
Eric nods or whispers back something like, “Or God is amazingly faithful.”
Frankly, I think it’s both.
You see, Jonathan’s mouth is overflowing with praise songs. True, it’s fun to listen to his renditions of songs like Promises. We were walking through the mall yesterday, and he’s singing at the top of his lungs, “All of Your promises won’t let go of me….oh, oh, oh, I can’t forget about it.”
Abigail is much the same. More often than not, her heart bubbles from her lips with praise song after worship song. It delights my heart to stand in church with her and hear her sing as loud as she can along with everyone else. She came back from Vacation Bible School a couple weeks ago singing all kinds of songs about the fruit of the Spirit.
And singing those principles will cement them in my children’s hearts. How many songs from your childhood can you still recite word for word? Many of the verses I have memorized started as a song I learned at church. I will never forget the words to El Shaddai, The Warrior is a Child, or even I am a Promise (a classic from the Bill Gaither Trio for Children), Psalty, and Bullfrogs and Butterflies. Does anyone else remember those? And I’ve added literally thousands of songs since then.
At times those songs are literally a lifeline pulling me back to the throne room of God when emotionally I couldn’t be farther away for whatever reason.
I turn on Casting Crowns and belt out Praise You in the Storm or Lifesong. Or plug in Desperation Band and sing Amazed or really anything. Anything that reminds me of the promises and character of God.
So when I see my three and six year olds choosing to turn on Point of Grace or another praise and worship album or they ask to sing Voice of Truth just one more time, I smile and thank God for His faithfulness. Because no matter what Eric and I do to train our children, only God can turn their hearts to Him.
And when they’re adults, they’ll have a wellspring well-stocked with verses to sing to Him in the good and bad times.
Cross posted at Generation NeXt Parenting.