As one news story after another broke exposing the misconduct of powerful men, I found myself turning to God more and more for His help in raising these boys to be young men of integrity. It feels heavy at times, but this is why God gave us His Word and His Son. He gives us guidance as we live in this world but try to not become of it. Here are a few verses to focus on and pray with your boys to help God shape their character.
Proverbs 28:6 Better is a poor man who walks in his integrity than a rich man who is crooked in his ways. (ESV) Many of the news stories I referenced earlier involved wealthy, famous men who climbed their way to the top in unscrupulous ways. Our culture puts such a strong focus on worldly success, which is defined by wealth and fame. It shouldn’t come as a surprise, then, that people put aside morals and good character to achieve this kind of success. We must point our children in the direction of what God values most – integrity and a heart wants to be more like Him.
Proverbs 4:25-27 Let your eyes look directly forward, and your gaze be straight before you. Ponder the path of your feet; then all your ways will be sure. Do not swerve to the right or to the left; turn your foot away from evil. (ESV) Temptations are ever-present in our daily lives. Entertainment, the internet, and social media put these temptations front and center for each and every one of us, including our children. It is important to talk to our sons about what they will face and guide them in how to handle the temptations that come their way. I love these verses because they talk about discipline and focus. This passage acknowledges that we will come face-to-face with evil, but we must not let it take our eyes off Jesus. We must help our sons prepare to be resolved when the enemy tries to pull them off the path of integrity and holiness.
Luke 6:31 Do to others as you would have them do to you. NLT Our sons have probably heard this verse, also known as The Golden Rule, a million times, but this is one that really needs to sink in. When we make bad decisions, it is often because we act impulsively and out of selfishness. Kids will have the same motivations, but memorizing this verse and really understanding it can help them to make better decisions in the moment. When I talk about this with my boys, I use specific examples, such as what to do when someone asks them to stop doing something, when they hurt someone (accidentally or on purpose), or when they have a disagreement with someone. As I mentioned previously, preparing our children for difficult or uncomfortable situations ahead of time is key to helping them make wise, respectable decisions. The lessons we teach our sons about respect, responsibility, and righteousness will go a long way in helping them lead lives of integrity, but they also need to be backed up by a love for Jesus and a desire to walk in His ways. Pray over your son, and with him, for him to become, like David, a man after God’s own heart. As a mom of three boys, I’m praying for this generation to lead a revolution marked by godly character, wisdom, and integrity, and I am believing with my whole heart God will make this possible.
What are your favorite Bible verses or truths to share with your son about integrity?