The Gift of Adornment

Posted on · Posted in Discipline, Parenting, Shaping Influences

The Holy Spirit makes a vital connection between adornment and protection! 

You care about your children. You want to protect them from harm. So you take the obvious precautions: you use car seats, you dress them in warm clothing, you install a security system, you take them to the doctor and you do everything possible to keep them physically safe.

But what about spiritual protection? Children who are spiritually adorned are also spiritually protected. It is the fear of the Lord that will keep your children from being deceived by the traps and enticing snares of this world. Proverbs 1:8-9 helps us see that instruction regarding the fear of the Lord is to be given as a precious gift to adorn your children:

Listen, my son, to your father’s instruction
and do not forsake your mother’s teaching.
They are a garland to grace your head
and a chain to adorn your neck.

The fear of God will protect your children from the deceptions of life. The fear of God is not established by harsh words and rules, or by an emphasis on performance and severe discipline. It is established first by parents loving and following God from their own hearts. Parental instruction must be grace-centered and not performance-centered! Parents, if you want the awesome fear of God to protect your children, that fear must abide deeply, wonderfully in your heart. You can’t give what you don’t have. If you are not adorned by and deeply value the fear of the Lord, you will not be able to give this adorning grace to your children.  If your children are not adorned by your instruction, they will be spiritually unprotected. They will be easy prey for the deceptions of the enemy’s lies.

So how does this adornment take place?

It begins with you seeing the huge significance of your instruction as God’s provision for your children to know about him.  As Proverbs says, God’s wisdom is more valuable than anything else that you or your children can desire. So when you bring God’s truth to your children you must handle it as if you are presenting the most valuable of all treasures, because it is!

This means blurting out commands, bible verses, corrections in frustration and anger is totally out of keeping with presenting these priceless riches to your children. If you gave your 10 year-old daughter a gold necklace by tossing it to her in a beat-up paper bag with the words, “Hope you like it.” She will probably not know how special your gift actually is. But, if you wrap it in a beautiful presentation of box, paper and bow and give it to her at a special time, she will much more be likely to appreciate the gift for the treasure that it is.

It is the same thing with presenting God’s instruction to your children. If you speak with pleasant, constructive words without anger; if your spirit is humble and gentle, if your convictions are firm and sure, and if your dependence on the redemptive of grace of Christ is obvious, then you will be adorning your children with truth that will protect them. This instruction will be something they will wear as if it were the finest gold necklace.  This is adornment is spiritual protection!

Presenting God’s truth in a way that adorns your children is the most effective way you have of protecting their hearts. Do you want to protect them from the deception of the world, the flesh, and the devil? Adorn them with the beauty of God’s instruction. 

Children who are spiritually adorned with God’s truth are children who are spiritually protected from God’s enemies!

Related resources:

Instructing a Child's Heart

Instructing a Child’s Heart

 

Shepherding a Child's Heart

Shepherding a Child’s Heart

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Jay Younts
John A. (Jay) Younts is the Shepherd Press blogger, and is a ruling elder serving at Redeemer Associate Reformed Presbyterian Church in Moore, South Carolina. He has written Everyday Talk, Everyday Talk About Sex & Marriage, Finding the Right Track, the In Touch With Paul stewardship series, and What About War. He has studied and taught about biblical childrearing for 30 years. He and his late wife Ruth have five adult children.