If we believe man cannot live by bread alone why do our families spent most of their time hanging out in the bakery?
There are few things more enticing than the rustic and inviting smells of a fresh, warm loaf coming out of the oven.
And just like this loaf of bread, there are so many amazing treasures and activities in this world which are enticing, exciting and pleasurable to pursue.
These, at least in their purest forms, are the gifts of God for us to freely enjoy. Food. Nature. Music. Sports. Education. Entertainment. Vacations. Thejoie de vivre as they say in France.
But if we believe the words of Jesus, these blessings are not enough to satisfy the desires of our soul and the purpose of our being.
Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the desert to be tempted by the devil.
After fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry.
The tempter came to him and said, “If you are the Son of God,
tell these stones to become bread.” Jesus answered, “It is written:
‘Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word
that comes from the mouth of God.’”
Although many of these activities are enjoyable and enriching, in the grand scheme, they lack eternal value.
In a way, they are flavorful junk food. High on time calories and low on spiritual nutrition.
When we gorge ourselves on the bread of this world, we starve ourselves from the Bread of Life. We’re not serving our family the home cooked meal of a vibrant relationship with God. As a result, our loved ones become weak and are easily swept up by the currents of our culture.
So when our children are tempted by Satan through peer pressure, loneliness or depression they are helpless and rather than reaching for the Word for wisdom and protection, they beg for stones to be turned to earthly bread.
Ours is a drive-thru, fast food Christianity, with Jesus being an afterthought, the toy in the bottom of the bag. The result is a life full of heartburn and unholy indigestion. Our arteries become so clogged with the world there is no room for a deep and authentic relationship with God.
One of the most important lessons we can teach our children is the prioritization of God in our lives. So what are we telling them when their life is all about minivan rides from the soccer tournament to dance practice to art lessons?
Sure. We want our kids to have straight A’s, master a musical instrument and be the stars of their sport, but are we grasping for this at the cost of a paper-thin faith?
We think we’re doing the right thing, but the only message we’re providing our children is that they are in the center of the world, rather than how critical it is that they get centered with Christ.
As our children grow older, our lips become less useful as a parenting tool and the only sermons that stick are our actions. One of our most important actions we engage in as a parent is planning out the weekly schedule. Realizing that every “Yes” means a “No” to something else, we have to take this job seriously.
What does your calendar look like? Do you have the courage to analyze a week, breaking each day hour by hour? How much time is allocated for prayer and being in the Word? How much for television? Is your family calendar full of eternally wholesome, God honoring activities?
I’m looking at ours and it’s full of candy wrappers and corn dog sticks.
What’s grieving me is how short the time is. With my children growing up, the single grain of sand that used to pass through the hour glass is now gushing through like a desert storm.
I need to get this right. And right away. Time for a change.
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Enjoying Michael’s writing? Learn more about the author Michael K. Reynolds