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Good Training

Psalms 32:6-11 :

For this, let everyone who is godly pray to you in a time when you may be found.
Surely when the great waters overflow, they shall not reach to him.
You are my hiding place.
You will preserve me from trouble.
You will surround me with songs of deliverance.


I will instruct you and teach you in the way which you shall go.
I will counsel you with my eye on you.
Don’t be like the horse, or like the mule, which have no understanding,
who are controlled by bit and bridle, or else they will not come near to you.
Many sorrows come to the wicked,
but loving kindness shall surround him who trusts in Yahweh.
Be glad in Yahweh, and rejoice, you righteous!
Shout for joy, all you who are upright in heart!

It's important when we consider this part of the psalm, that we remember that it was just talking about the fact that we have been forgiven. Notice that he starts this part by saying: "For this..." It's because of the fact that we are forgiven that we are now godly and can pray and expect God to hear us now. Even David understood that he needed God's help to actually live a godly life. We need God's salvation on a regular basis so that we can escape from all kinds of troubles as they come up.

I realized something very interesting about parenting in this next paragraph of the song. I recognized that David used the same word pattern: "in the way which you shall go," as his son Solomon did in a proverb about parenting. Let's take a look at that:

Proverbs 22:6 :

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

Well, we can see that David's son, Solomon, ended up writing the Bible. That's a pretty good sign, but notice the similarity in the wording. What I found helpful was David's additional commentary in his song. First he says: "I will counsel you with my eye on you." Obviously, this means direct involvement. As parents, we can't expect to just tell our kids what do do and then leave. We need to be close enough to keep our eyes on them. We should be involved. I know how hard that is to do, especially in financially difficult situations. Even so, it should be our goal, even if we have to adjust our finances a bit. Then David goes on to tell those of us that he is training, to not act like a horse or a mule that has to wear a bit in its mouth, telling it every little move to make. If we look at this the other way, as parents, we shouldn't be micromanaging our children. We need to help them make their own decisions. That's what David is wanting to see happen and this will also take time and effort. It will be worth it when they mature and are capable of making decisions on their own someday.

Most of all we want to teach our children about how to believe in God. That might mean getting into some difficult discussions about God. We need to teach our children why they should believe, not just tell them to. That may mean that we have to do some studying too. I find that when I know why I believe, I really learn to praise God from my heart, just like David does here.

Becoming a Christian

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