My children go through stages when they are scared of the dark or don’t want to be alone. For a time Tiana didn’t have this fear but she started to be afraid of being alone early this year. Even though I would explain to her that Jesus is with her, it wasn’t until she memorized a song during Daily Vacation Bible School (DVBS) that she internalized this.
About three months ago, my kids attended DVBS with the theme “Studio Go,” which centered on the passage in Joshua 1:9: “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”
One of the songs the kids learned went something like this, “Wherever I go, God is with me, wherever I am, he is there…” It was a catchy tune and Tiana would sing it to herself frequently while walking around the house. Studio Go! Music CD
When we were talking about being afraid some days ago, she told me, “God is with me.” She also remarked to Edric, “God is with me wherever I go.” One time I also caught her sitting on the bed saying to herself, “I’m not scared because Jesus is with me.” And on another occasion, she stopped Edric on his way out the door and told him, “Are you going to be by yourself, Daddy?” Don’t be scared, God is with you.”
It was so precious to hear my three year old say these things. And it reaffirmed the power of music to commit truth and principles to memory.
Of course, there is an upside and a downside to this.
Whatever our children listen to can have a positive or negative affect on them. As a family, we prefer to play uplifting and God-centered music in our home and car. Our househelp isn’t permitted to blast secular music while cleaning. So our kids have little exposure to pop music. They cannot be absolutely sheltered from it, especially at parties, in the mall, at a store, or other people’s homes.
One morning as we heard Katy Perry’s “Firework” song, Tiana said, “Oh, it’s my favorite song!” and started singing along. How this happened is a mystery. I just laughed as she sang it. Edric and and I aren’t legalists, especially with elements that are beyond our control. And we aren’t paranoid about pop music, but we also know that it can pass along the wrong kinds of values to our kids. It’s like subtle programming.
So in our home, we prefer to be careful about media influences and filter them for our children. We like them to listen to music that will turn their hearts towards righteousness, holiness, and a greater love for the Lord.
Music can be a wonderful tool for teaching. It can convey or reinforce biblical truth in the lives of our kids much more effectively than merely memorizing scripture. Here are some great resources that I’ve used with my kids to build up spiritual truth in them which you might want to look into for your own home:
Memory Bible – A to Z Vol 1
Memory Bible – A to Z Vol 2