HE LORD HAS RECENTLY IMPRESSED upon me again the need of reminding Seventh-day Adventist parents of the important work to be done in the home. To all parents who profess to believe in the soon return of Christ, there is given a solemn work of preparation, that they and their children may be ready to meet the Lord at His coming. . . .
There are few parents who realize how important it is to give to their children the influence of a godly example. Yet this is far more potent than precept. No other means is so effective in training them in right lines. The children and youth must have a true copy in right-doing if they succeed in overcoming sin and perfecting a Christian character. This copy they should find in the lives of their parents. If they enter the city of God, and rejoice in the overcomer’s reward, someone must show them the way. By living before their children godly, consistent lives, parents may make the work before them clear and plain.
It is God’s desire that parents should be to their children the embodiment of the principles laid down in His Word. Let them make it their aim to train their children for God. To keep the feet of their children in the narrow path will call for faithful effort and constant prayer, but it is possible to train the children and youth to love and serve God. It is possible to inculcate the principles of righteousness . . . until the desires and inclinations of the heart are in harmony with the mind and will of God. When fathers and mothers realize the responsibility resting upon them, and respond to the appeals of God’s Spirit in behalf of this neglected work, there will be seen in the homes of the people transformations that will cause the angels to rejoice. . . .
It is the privilege of parents and children to grow together in the grace of Christ. Those who comply with the conditions laid down in the Word will find full provision for their spiritual needs, and for power to overcome. Feeling the need of that grace which Heaven alone can furnish, and which Christ imparts to all who seek, they will become partakers of the heavenly gift.
Those who have accepted Bible truth are to keep the truth circumspectly. They are to follow on to know the Lord, gathering into their souls the light of heaven. But they must not stop there. They are to communicate the light and knowledge received. The Lord expects parents to make earnest, united efforts in the training of their children for Him. In the home they are to cultivate the graces of the Spirit, in all their ways acknowledging Him who through the sanctification of the Spirit has promised to make us perfect in every good work. . . .
Parents need to understand the temptations that the youth must daily meet, that they may teach them how to overcome them. There are influences in the school and in the world that parents need to guard against. God wants us to turn our eyes from the vanities and pleasures and ambitions of the world, and set them on the glorious and immortal reward of those who run with patience the race set before them in the gospel. . . .
The Lord is soon coming, and we must prepare for this solemn event. My brethren and sisters, let your daily life in the home reveal the living principles of the Word of God. Heavenly agencies will cooperate with you as you seek to reach the standard of perfection, and as you seek to teach your children how to conform their lives to the principles of righteousness. . . .
A United Front
Parents should be united in their faith, that they may be united in their efforts to bring their children up in the belief of the truth. Upon the mother in a special sense rests the work of molding the minds of the young children. But the father should feel more deeply than he usually does his responsibilities in the home. Upon him as well as upon the mother rests the duty of laboring for the spiritual welfare of his children. . . . Let parents work unitedly, instilling into their children’s hearts the principles of righteousness. . . .
Home missionary work is a most important work. It should be our first work to give that light to those related to us by the ties of kinship and blood. There should be no neglect on our part to do our utmost to bring them to an understanding of the knowledge we have received. . . .
Christ is waiting for the cooperation of human agencies, that He may impress the hearts of our children and youth. With intense desire heavenly beings long to see parents making that preparation which is essential if they and their children stand loyal to God in the coming conflict, and enter in through the gates to the city of God. . . .
Seventh-day Adventists believe that Ellen G. White exercised the biblical gift of prophecy during more than 70 years of public ministry. This article is excerpted from one that first appeared in the
Advent Review and Sabbath Herald, now the
Adventist Review, October 12, 1911.