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From a young age, I knew I wanted to get married and have kids. I thought that once I found the right guy, everything else would be easy. My husband and I had all the right talks before and after we got married, so I thought raising children would be no big deal. We remembered how our parents did it and we saw godly examples from people at church. How hard could it be? Even after all those talks and seeing examples, I still assumed it would be easy to point my kids to God and that they would happily obey.

Having children, I now know that this is really, really, really hard (and we’re just getting started since my oldest is only eight). I never considered that my kids would really be sinners and would disobey and argue with me about what they should or should not be doing. My plan of just pointing them to God was not that simple! It’s much more complicated and takes time and effort! My husband and I need to be a united front when it comes to raising our family. We need to talk and plan and have family goals and personal goals. It’s so important to carve out time in your busy schedule to have these conversations with your husband (or, if you’re single, make time to sit and think and write down your goals). God gave us children to raise for Him. We need to be the example for them. We need to be holy. Our kids will do what we do, but not always what we say.

Proverbs 22:6 says, Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it. My job as a mother is to do exactly that. I need to show them my love by serving them. I need them to see me reading my Bible and praying and participating in Bible studies and small groups and church functions and activities. I need them to see me going out of my way to help someone in need. These things give us direction. They give us a common goal of loving and serving others. This is training them in the way they should go. Proverbs 16:3 offers further encouragement: Commit your works to the Lord, and your plans will be established. If we don’t have goals, it can be easy to end up living selfishly, rather than selflessly. What’s driving your family? What spiritual goals do you have?