Family Life: That Spark in Your Child

Whether you are aware of its meaning or not, the following verse bears repeating as its lesson is vital in raising spiritually healthy children. Proverbs 22:6 states…

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

Armed with biblical authority, parents often take ownership of their child’s future. After all, to fail could be a negative reflection on mom and dad. As dependants, children need to be taught skills that will get them through life however, where does the line need to be drawn when differences exist between parents and their child. Children have to be taught reverence to God and His Word, the importance of manners, safe boundaries and appropriate behaviours; however, lets dig deeper  and see what this verse is really saying. The Amplified Bible exposes a clearer understanding and context of what the author is trying to communicate. It says…

Train up a child in the way he should go [and in keeping with his individual gift or bent], and when he is old he will not depart from it.

Parents procreate; but it is God that creates. Mom and dad, your children are an outflow of your union, but God had your child’s future in mind even before he or she was born (Psalm 139:16). He created them with a destiny that suited His purposes. He gave your child gifts and abilities in order to accomplish divine purposes and these translate into your child’s bent. That bent is a spark to be set on fire.

As a family we love the outdoors and when our kids were young, we did a lot of camping. One of our favourite evening rituals was sitting around the campfire. Lighting it was sometimes a challenge, but if we could start with a spark, then get an ember, then we could fan or blow on it and before long the flame was burning strong.

The role of the parent isn’t only to teach the necessary lifeskills, but also to identify and discern the skills, roles, gifts and abilities that God placed in your children. This is their bent.

This is their spark; and it is your responsibility to nurture it and set it aflame even when this bent is very different from yours.

When they are older they will confidently take ownership of it and continue what you began. This is what Paul was saying to Timothy in 2 Timothy 1:6 (NIV) when he wrote…

For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you…

If you want to be a fabulous parent that will bring out the best in your child, go armed with a new understanding of what Solomon was saying in Proverbs. Make the effort and become your child’s biggest….FAN!


  1. Judy Melrose says

    You can always talk the talk but ultimately is you must walk the walk….I ALWAYS prayed for “one thing” for my two girls…that they be saved…I didn’t pray for them to be smart…but they both are..I didn’t pray for them to be pretty but they are gorgeous…etc. etc.

    I am pleased and thank God that they are bringing up my 4 wonderful grandchildren to serve the Lord and are bringing them up in church and they all love the Lord….I was absolutely thrilled to see one of my granddaughters post on facebook about not being ashamed of being a Christian…..remember you can NEVER outgive God..He will ALWAYS supply our needs BEFORE we even ask!

    Judy Melrose

    • Judy:

      No question that prayer is essential and I’m so glad that your heritage has been passed not only onto your children but to you grandchildren as well.

      Setting an example for the kids is paramount. This article is being very specific in terms of creating not only born again children but confident born again children that have been stamped with both divine and parental approval. I’ve counselled many kids over the years who loved Jesus from the depths of their soul but had a very poor self image as a result of parents that tried to make kids who they (that parent) was based on a misinterpretation of the key scripture in the article instead of fanning the flame of who God created the child to be. Parenting is no easy task; and even more difficult if our children are wired very different than mom and/or dad. Congrats that you have been so blessed.


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