By Kimberly Webb

This week’s topic: Reaching Our Children

The Bible states that our children will be like olive plants around our table. I wondered why God would use an olive plant to describe children. I began researching olive plants and found that they are rare plants that can grow well in coastal climate environments, such as the Mediterranean, South Africa, Australia and some parts of California.

They grow slowly and require a long, hot growing season to properly ripen. Olive plants can grow when neglected, but they don’t grow very well. A deep, monthly watering is recommended for maximum growth potential. As a result of researching olive plants, I began to see the reason God used them in His word to describe our children.

Olive plants, like children, grow well in the right kind of environment. And as their parents, we are responsible for creating that environment. This is a key parenting principle because our environment colors the view we have of ourselves, others and the life around us. Therefore, parents must spend the time necessary to create an environment where our children receive the Word of God, prayer, encouragement and affirmation needed to grow and flourish, thus producing good fruit themselves.

Honestly, we all have been guilty of not spending enough time with our children or doing something else while we are supposedly spending time with them. But we are being held accountable for what we are pouring into our children. No one should have more influence on a child than God and that child’s parents.

You may be saying, “But I don’t have time, I’ve got too much on my plate.” Then maybe it’s time to clean the plate. Don’t get me wrong, I‘m not saying that you have to drop everything that doesn’t involve your child. But I am saying that it is your responsibility to remove the unnecessary things that fill up your time. You and I are responsible for creating an environment where our olive plants can grow and thrive, reaching their fullest potential.

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