RELATED VERSE: AND FORGIVE US OUR DEBTS AS WE FORGIVE OUR DEBTORS
A Letter to Read/Use As A Guide With Your Children
Remember what your football pants looked like right after your game? They were filthy, weren’t they?! Now, let’s say, when I saw the damage that was done to your clothes, I decided to send you all to the garage instead of the laundry room, so you could “strip down” in there. I then told you (and myself), that I would deal with the muddy mess of clothes later. And then, what if your dear Mother, somehow, got distracted in the day (imagine that!) and forgot all about the big-time-muddy-mess in the garage? And finally, let’s say, the pile sat another day, and then another . . . . Children, answer this simple question for me: Would your pants in the pile be clean or dirty? Yes, you’re absolutely right, they would still be filthy! As a matter of fact, they would probably be dirtier than the day they were first put there. They would definitely have grown a powerful stench, and the mud would have had time to sit, and settle in.
Sweet ones, my point here goes back, once again, to your heart. You, like I said before, have sin in your life now, and always will. Do not let this discourage you; because, remember, you also have the “Great Cleanser” of the heart, Jesus Christ, who continually washes you from this sin. However, it is your responsibility to bring your sin before Him. If you do not confess your sins, they will remain in your heart. And not only that, they will grow! Confess your sin, my children. Do not hide your wrong-doing “in a corner” or “under a rug”; it will be uncovered. And do not belittle your sin, casting it off as trivial or frivolous; it will grow. Finally, do not wait to confess your sin, so you can “enjoy” it just one last time; it will have time to fester and spread.
Remember also, children, your sin affects more than just you. For example, say Bink was the first one to get all muddy in the football game. But then, he tackled Emmy. You can be sure some of the mud that was all over him spread to Emmy during his tackle (even if the tackle was done gently). Do you see what I’m saying? Take this truth to heart. Please, children, remove all the pride that might keep you from falling on your knees before a holy, yet forgiving God. Like I said, He’s waiting for you to ask. He is so faithful to forgive! So, my sweet ones, go boldly to the throne of grace, with a truly repentant heart and confess your sin to the One who can purify your soul. I can assure you, through God’s Word, if you confess your sin, you will receive His forgiveness. Then, in faith, you will walk away from His throne of grace, fresh and new, ready to serve Him once more.
Teaching Tools/Activities For Your Children
- Obtain a white board and erasable markers. Have your child scribble all over the white board to represent sin.
- Have your child ask you, “Will you please clean the white board for me?” Do so until all marker is erased.
- Explain to your child that just like he/she had to ask for the white board to be cleaned, he/she has to ask for Jesus to clean their heart; and Jesus will do this willingly.
A Prayer To Pray Over Your Children
Dear Heavenly Father,
I pray my children would always come before You with a humbled heart, ready to acknowledge and confess their sin before Your holy presence. You are full of amazing grace! A broken and contrite heart, O God, Thou will not despise (Ps. 51:17).
Please, dear Lord, I ask that You would keep my children from trying to “hide” their sin from their daddy and me, as their parents, or from You. Continue to enlighten us, and make us very aware of the intentions of their heart so their sin may be “nipped in the bud.” May this process of quick confession keep their sin from growing, spreading, and then collapsing all around them.
Impress on their hearts, dear Lord, these two things: No matter what, their sin will be exposed. And also, no matter what, their sin will bring consequences, not only on themselves, but also on the lives of those they love the most. Convict them of these truths, O God. But at the same time, help them to remember that You, dear Jesus, never come to judge and condemn us to death; but rather to SAVE and provide for us a beautiful life, both now and forever!
I do ask for the prompting of Your Spirit to always help them to think before they speak, and think before they act. And in a time of temptation, may they always call on You. Please remind them, dear Father, Your Son, Jesus, was also tempted by Satan, yet He prevailed! Also reveal to them that they can have His Holy Spirit to be their strength in time of weakness, so that they, too, can also prevail. God, if they have found themselves deep in the pit of a certain sin, please show them the “way of escape” that You offer every time!
Then, dear Lord, give them the continual desire and ability to choose this way of freedom! May they yearn for the pleasure and joy found in Your eternal presence, rather than being satisfied with the fleeting pleasures and enjoyment found in this temporal world. I ask, dear Father, when they do confess their sin before You, they will then be awed by the beautiful growth that always comes when a weakness of the flesh is turned into a God-filled strength.
Finally, I pray You would reveal to my children any sin in their heart that they may not even be aware of. May they take time to examine themselves as they read Your Word and pray to You. Bring to the surface any impurities that they need to confess to You, their “Great Cleanser.” Wash [them] with hyssop, and [they] shall be clean . . . (Ps. 51:7). I believe You can make them completely white, dear Father. Make them believe it, too. May they come humbly before You to ask for a purified soul.
Scripture references in letter:
Ps. 32:1-5; Pr. 16:18; James 5:16; I John 1:8-10, 2:1-2
Scripture references in prayer:
Pr. 28:13; Num. 32:23; Matt. 4:1-11; I Cor. 10:13; II Cor. 3:17; II Cor. 12:9-10; Ps. 139:23-24; Lam 3:40; Ps. 51:1-2, 7,10-13.