Sink or Swim: Faith Lessons For Your Children
Both my wife and I, having been born and raised in Puerto Rico, (an island surrounded by water 🙄) learned to swim at a young age. And now living in Miami, with pools and water all around us, we decided to enroll our 1-year-old daughter in swimming classes mainly for safety reasons.
I was excited because I got to take her to the swimming classes. It was great for a while, but then I started to question why they spent so much time teaching them one simple thing. You see, for nearly a year there was one drill they would repeat over and over again: to swim to and hold on to the ledge of the pool.
However, this is one of the most important and necessary swimming skills to learn early on. Children gain the confidence they need knowing that if they ever fall into a pool they have the ability to swim to the ledge to safety. It’s so important that whenever my daughter tried swimming towards me the instructor would correct her and point her to the ledge.
Just recently we had a really great idea to buy her a cool vest that helped her float. It’s great, I thought, but I quickly noticed a potential issue. After a couple of times of jumping into the pool with her new vest on, she stopped swimming back to the ledge (for stability and safety); which was the number one thing she learned in over a year of swimming lessons. Now she was just letting the floaties do all the work, putting all her trust in the vest. Now, that’s the point of the vest, right? But, what happens if the vest fails or when she doesn’t have it on? The issue is that she’s substituting a lifelong, lifesaving skill for something very temporary.
"As Christian parents, we need to teach our children to trust God because there are no floaties for life."
As Christian parents, we have to teach our children that faith in God is the ledge they need to hold onto when the storms of life hit because there are no floaties for life. Just like the ledge of a pool, God is always going to be there for our children. They will face tough circumstances that will shake their foundation, and there will be times they may feel they are drowning (Matt. 7:24-27). Yet, if we teach them that when they’re drifting away, they can always swim back to the ledge - Jesus - they’ll remain strong.
Ask yourself: Am I teaching my children to rely on temporary things? Eg., toys, grades, clothes. Is my own sense of security coming from my position, name, money, etc.?
Principle: Do not rely on temporary things for safety. Trust in God and teach your children to trust in Him too by letting them see you take steps of faith and obedience.