"These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up" (Deuteronomy 6:6, 7).
"In His Steps", a classic written by Charles Sheldon, is the second best-selling Christian book of all time (following the Bible). Over 30 million copies have been sold. Brooksyne read it in her early teen years shortly after her decision to follow Christ. It had a profound effect upon her commitment in walking in the ways of the Lord. I read it in my college years. It is also the inspiration behind the WWJD theme that was so popular (and heavily commercialized) several years ago.
Garrett Sheldon, the great-grandson of Charles, wrote, "My great-grandfather grew up on a farm in the mid-1800s. His father was a missionary and a church planter. They read the Bible aloud every day, so that by the time Charles went to school, he had heard the entire Bible read aloud five times! This prepared him to write 'In His Steps' which changed the world with the question, 'What Would Jesus Do?'."
The exercise of reading Scripture aloud in the home reminds me of visits I made to Brooksyne's grandparents' home in the hills of Arkansas before we married. They had a practice of gathering each night in the living room of their small four room mountain home and reading Scripture aloud before kneeling in prayer. Whether you were a visitor or not you were expected to drop whatever you were doing and join them for devotions. Her grandpa, Elbert, had great difficulty reading so he always had one of the grandchildren read if they were visiting. It holds a special memory for Brooksyne and me to this day.
This sounds a lot like God's design as conveyed through Moses during his last sermon. God wants His Word to have the preeminent part in a person's spiritual development.
"These commandments are to be upon your hearts." This is key to personal spiritual development. Proverbs 4:23 teaches us to preserve our hearts; "Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life."
"Impress them on your children" is a vital key in the transmission of His truth to succeeding generations. Paul wrote concerning Timothy that "from infancy you have known the holy Scriptures which are able to make you wise for salvation" (2 Timothy 3:15). Timothy's grandmother Lois and mother Eunice had faithfully impressed God's Word upon Timothy.
"Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up." This instruction indicates that the follower of God is not to have a casual attitude toward God's commands, but they're to be written upon the tablets of their hearts. These commands are at the heart of our daily conversation. After they're memorized and carried out they become our foundation for godliness and a great defense against the lies that bombard us.
How much emphasis does God's Word have in your life and home?
Be encouraged today,
Stephen & Brooksyne Weber
Daily prayer: Father, help us to learn Your commands, apply them to our hearts, and carry them out in our daily actions. We desire to be obedient to You and to bring our children into a faithful relationship with You as well. We love You with all our heart, with all our soul, and with all our strength. May our absolute devotion bring honor to You and witness to others of our fervent commitment to serve You all the days of our lives. Amen.