I want them to know what I know of His goodness, trust as I do in His provision, believe as I've come to in His faithfulness.
I want them to revel in His Word, be consumed by His work, and devote themselves in His service.
A struggle for me has been how to 'train up a child in the way he should go' while still ensuring that the choice is his. I don't want my children simply to follow in my religion; I want them to fall in love with my Savior.
I want them to wrestle and search, question and think.
I want their allegiance to Christ to be of their own accord. How to lead them to Jesus without commanding it of them has been, and I'm sure will continue to be, a delicate balance.
So I speak of Him as if He is a tangible part of my life, sharing with them what I see of His works. I pray to Him in front of them, giving them a picture of what a life following Him looks like. I tell them when I've messed up, and let them see that I'm not perfect. They see me reading my Bible and journaling my thoughts, and we have conversations about questions they have.
We were driving home one night, and somehow began talking about prayer. I was explaining that praying is just as much about listening to what the Holy Spirit says as it is about talking, and my sweet, precocious daughter chimed in.
"Mommy, it's kind of hard to hear Jesus, but I bet elephants can because they have really big ears."
Haven't you ever wanted really big elephant ears? Haven't you ever needed to hear Jesus but struggled to do so?
I explained to Katherine - and reminded myself - that in times when it's hard to hear the still, small voice, we have to remember the words He's already said.
We have to know the truth of Scripture in the times when His voice is silent.
We have to rely on who He is when we can't hear what He says.
One day, when they're old enough, I will share with them this journey and the lessons it has taught me. In the meantime, however, I will simply share the journey's Jesus and the love that He has shown. I will tell of His goodness and ever-present help.
I will teach them His Word, and pray that they'll have elephant ears.