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From Heaven With Love

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    An Example to Mothers and Fathers

    Children are still the most susceptible to the teachings of the gospel; their hearts are strong to retain the lessons received. Little children may be Christians, in accordance with their years.HLv 343.4

    Fathers and mothers should look on their children as younger members of the Lord's family, committed to them to educate for heaven. The Christian home becomes a school, with the parents as underteachers and Christ Himself the chief instructor. We should teach our children to bring their sins to Jesus, asking forgiveness and believing that He pardons them as He received the children when He was personally on earth.HLv 343.5

    As the mother teaches her children to obey her because they love her, she is teaching them the first lesson in the Christian life. The mother's love represents to the child the love of Christ, and the little ones who trust and obey their mother are learning to trust and obey the Saviour.HLv 344.1

    Jesus was also the father's example. His word was with power; yet even with rude and violent men He did not use one unkind or discourteous expression. The grace of Christ in the heart will soften whatever is harsh and subdue all that is coarse and unkind. It will lead fathers and mothers to treat their children as they themselves would like to be treated.HLv 344.2

    Parents, in training your children, study the lessons God has given in nature. If you would train a rose or lily, how would you do it? Ask the gardener how he makes every branch and leaf to develop in symmetry and loveliness. He will tell you: it was by no rude touch, no violent effort; this would only break the delicate stems. It was by little attentions, often repeated. He moistened the soil and protected the growing plants from the fierce blasts and scorching sun, and God caused them to blossom into loveliness. By gentle touches, seek to fashion the characters of your children after the pattern of the character of Christ.HLv 344.3

    Encourage the expression of love toward God and toward one another. The reason why there are so many hardhearted men and women in the world is that true affection has been discouraged and repressed. The better nature of these persons was stifled in childhood; and unless divine love shall melt away their cold selfishness, their happiness will be forever ruined. If we wish our children to possess the tender spirit of Jesus, we must encourage the generous, loving impulses of childhood.HLv 344.4

    Teach the children to see Christ in nature. Take them out into the open air, under the noble trees, into the garden. In all the wonderful works of creation teach them to see His love. He made the laws which govern all living things, and He has made laws for our happiness and joy. Do not weary them with long prayers and tedious exhortations, but through nature's object lessons teach them obedience to the law of God.HLv 344.5

    As you try to make plain the truths of salvation, point the children to Christ as a personal Saviour. Angels will be by your side. The Lord will give to fathers and mothers grace to interest their little ones in the precious story of the Babe in Bethlehem.HLv 345.1

    Do not keep the little ones away from Jesus by coldness and harshness. Never give them cause to feel that heaven will not be a pleasant place if you are there. Do not speak of religion as something that children cannot understand. Do not give the false impression that the religion of Christ is a religion of gloom and that in coming to the Saviour they must give up all that makes life joyful.HLv 345.2

    As the Holy Spirit moves upon the hearts of the children, cooperate with His work. The Saviour is calling them. Nothing can give Him greater joy than for them to give themselves to Him in the bloom and freshness of their years. His heart is drawn out, not only to the best-behaved children, but to those who have by inheritance objectionable traits of character. Many parents have not the tenderness and wisdom to deal with the erring children whom they have made what they are. But Jesus looks upon these children with pity.HLv 345.3

    Be Christ's agent in drawing these children to the Saviour. By wisdom and tact give them courage and hope. Through the grace of Christ they may be transformed in character, so that of them it may be said, “Of such is the kingdom of God.”HLv 345.4

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