“And all thy children shall be taught of the Lord and great shall be the peace of thy children.”
Isaiah 54.13. Children Arise Vol.1
It was a year I will never forget. Paul and I had three children, Andrea seven years, Jonathan five years and Michelle was one year old. This was the year that Paul decided to do extra study. He was a Biochemist at the Launceston General Hospital, and he decided he would like to study for a Fellowship in this area to further his career. This meant a full year of study for him so that by the time he took his exam in Melbourne he would know everything there was to know at that time about Biochemistry.
Every evening after we put the children to bed, Paul would go off to his make-shift study in our bedroom and study for a few hours at our old desk. Meanwhile I would be sitting in the lounge room, feeling sorry for myself and quite lonely. One evening as I sat there I thought to myself, “Paul is studying, what can I do?” As I prayed about it a thought began to come to me, “Teach the children Scripture!” This thought persisted and I began to search for a pack of Scripture cards that a friend of ours, Vince Misdom, had memorised through his association with a group called the Navigators. As I looked at the cards in my hand I became quite excited and pictured teaching our children Scriptures in this way too.
As a child I too had learnt many Scripture verses in Sunday School. We had a godly man called Basil Young who encouraged us children to learn many verses and psalms, and had rewarded us with gifts like pens, booklets, cards and recognition. I recalled all the times I had stood out the front of the Sunday School quoting the latest verse, psalm, even the books of the Bible, and the excitement I felt as I received my reward.
As I gazed at the pack of Scripture cards I began to picture our own children having a huge repertoire, and I began to pray and ask God how I could do this. A thought came to me, “teach the verses in song.” This thought was just like a light bulb going on in my mind, and I felt so excited I could hardly wait to begin! But what verse to teach? Then I remembered one of the first verses Basil Young had taught me years before, and I decided that this would be the verse I would begin with. It was 1 Corinthians 10.13. “There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man, but God is faithful who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able, but will with the temptation make a way to escape that ye may be able to bear it.”
The next day at breakfast I said to Paul, “The children are going to learn this verse, and they will quote it to you by the end of the week.” When I quoted the verse to Paul (there were fifty words in it!) he rolled his eyes and just said, “We’ll see.” That’s all I needed. “Yes,” I thought, “We will see!”
I began by writing out the verse on a small card and placing it above the sink in the kitchen where I could see it clearly. At the time I had been reading many books on faith, all of which explained that faith was simply asking God for what you needed and then thanking Him for the answer. So I did! I simply asked God for a tune for this verse and thanked Him for it. As I read the verse and thought about it a tune came to me, and I ran to the piano to see if it would fit the verse. Sure enough it did, and after playing it through a few times I felt confident to teach it. I also played the tune onto my tape recorder so I wouldn’t forget it, and as the week progressed I was totally amazed at how easily the children learnt such a hard verse. Friday tea time arrived and I planted the children in front of Paul while I went to the piano to play. They proceeded to sing the fifty word verse to him while he sat with his mouth hanging open. I was so excited! I knew that if the children could learn a verse of that size so easily through music, they could learn any verse.
Soon afterwards I was invited by a friend to hear a visiting speaker who had a prophetic ministry, and who was speaking at a tiny church in Exeter. I decided to go.
That night, as the speaker concluded his message, he asked if anyone would like to come and receive a ‘word from the Lord’. I and many others went forward. When the speaker came to me he asked if I had any children. I told him I had three. He looked intently at me and said, “I have a word for you, and it’s found in Isaiah 54.13.” “And all thy children shall be taught of the Lord and great shall be the peace of thy children.”
My eyes immediately filled with tears, and I felt as though God had just spoken clearly to my heart. He had given me an amazing confirmation that I was stepping into the plan he had for our family. I suddenly knew that as I taught Scripture to our children it would be God who would really be teaching them and His reward would be great peace in our home as our children learned to do life ‘God’s way’.
We had begun a new adventure that was to take us through the children’s formative years and well into their teens. This adventure would revolutionise not only their lives but those of Paul and I as well, for not only would our children ARISE and become full of God’s Word and learn His ways, but we as parents would also ARISE and become full of His Words and learn His ways too!