Training--the key to a godly character

Hey Sweet Momma, You're tons of fun and a great cook. Joy

Awakening to the darkness of an early day, I sleepily sauntered into the kitchen to make my early morning cuppa. Joy had thought ahead and placed this napkin message on the place she knew I would be making her breakfast. Taking her an early cup of tea each morning to awaken her and then making a hot breakfast of some kind and sending her off to her college classes with a prayer and a verse is our way around here these days. It is my way of filling her heart cup just a little before she forays off into the world of clashing values, a variety of challenges and people.

Showing what is in her own heart, gratefulness and the willingness to give back to me, is what warmed me when I found her sweet note. Gratefulness is not a natural character trait--it must be trainend, modeled, lived, practiced, cultivated.

So it is with all character. I often think that women that I speak with don't get the picture of discipleship. Their minds think like this, "I clothe my children, I provide their basic needs, we go to church, we have a fairly Christian home, and I think it is enough for my children.

However, when I picture my children's souls as a garden and realize that greatness of character must be planted, cultivated, fertilized, watered, protected, removing weeds and bugs and all that would kill the garden of their soul, I understand that discipleship is very intentional. It must be a daily, moment by moment endeavor. It is a way of life input. Excellence of character is not an accident. It is a purposed goal, and it must be trained over and over and over.

Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old, he will not depart from it.

I was reading an article about brains and it goes so well along with this verse. When children are very young, we can create pathways, deep highways of thoughts in their brains. We teach a truth and then we repeat it and then we practice it and so on, and each time a word and concept are repeated, it is like going over the path again and it creates deeper pathways and broader highways of brain patterns, and when the brain integrates new ideas or words, it immediately goes to the pathway already established in order to integrate an idea. So the more we train, talk, verbalize, and give our children food for thought about this concept where they speak back and interact more about an idea, the more clearly this concept is set.

I love it when science elucidates biblical principles--train up a child, over and over and over and in many different ways and in many different scenarios, and when he is old, it will be the first go to response of the adult because it is a deep pathway in his mind.

That is why children must be attended to by their parents---otherwise the soil of their hearts will just be subject to whatever else is planted their if the intentional planting and gardening is not well established. Whatever is planted, fertilized, watered and given sunlight will grow deep roots in their souls.

So many children just have fallow ground for their heart--not much intentionally planted, and so seeds and weeds and blown in by the wind and take over the uncultivated ground.

Training, then, will be the topic of some of my near articles, in between all the rest of life issues as I write about them.

So, today, what do you want to plant? What character qualities do you want to harvest in the lives of your self and in your own children?