“Train up a child in the way he should go.” Pr 22:6
The Bible says, “Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it” (v. 6). Observe the word “child.” You must begin early when: (1) Their will is flexible. A twig is much simpler to bend than a trunk. In the early years, your child’s will is like soft clay; malleable and flexible. You see, it’s when they’re young that you are to “set their ways,” because when they grow older, their “ways are set.” The Hebrew phrase “train up” refers to training a vine to grow in a certain shape or direction. If you wait, it will be too late! (2) There is still hope. “Chasten your son while there is hope, and do not set your heart on his destruction” (Pr 19:18 NKJV). When a parent says, “My kids are hopeless,” too often you find out those parents didn’t train their children while there was still hope. Listen to the urgency in Solomon’s voice: “He who spares his rod hates his son, but he who loves him disciplines him promptly” (Pr 13:24 NKJV). The Hebrew word for “promptly” refers to dawn, or early in the day. So, start early! Maybe you have a little darling running around in your house right now that you think is an angel. But someday those legs will grow longer, those wings will become shorter, and sometimes a little “angel” even sprouts horns! While your child is young and more apt and ready to listen to your advice and counsel, teach and train him or her how to live God’s way. If you do, you will never regret it.