The Influence of a Christian Home
He that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life. John 8:12.
Our time, our strength, and our energies belong to God; and if they are consecrated to His service, our light will shine. It will affect first and most strongly those in our own homes, who are most intimately associated with us; but it will extend beyond the home, even to “the world.” To many it will be a savor of life unto life; but there are some who will refuse to see the light, or to walk in it. They are of that class spoken of by our Saviour, when He said: “And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.” Such are in a very dangerous position; but their course does not excuse any of us from letting our light shine.
Suppose that because some ship had disregarded his warning beacon, and gone to pieces on the rocks, the lighthouse keeper should put out his lights, and say, “I will pay no more attention to the lighthouse”; what would be the consequence? But that is not the way he does. He keeps his lights burning all night, throwing their beams far out into the darkness, for the benefit of every mariner that comes within the dangerous reach of rocks and shoals. Were some ship to be wrecked because the lights went out, it would be telegraphed over the world that on such a night, at such a point, a ship went to pieces on the rocks because there was no light in the tower. But if some ships are wrecked because they pay no attention to the light, the lighthouse keeper is guiltless; they were warned, but they paid no heed.
What if the light in the household should go out? Then everyone in that house would be in darkness; and the result would be as disastrous as though the light were to go out in the lighthouse tower. Souls are looking at you, fellow Christians, to see whether you are drunken with the cares of this life, or are preparing for the future, immortal life. They will watch to see what the influence of your life is, and whether you are true missionaries at home, training your children for heaven.
The Christian’s first duty is in the home. Fathers and mothers, yours is a great responsibility. You are preparing your children for life or for death; you are training them for an abiding place here in the earth, for self-gratification in this life, or for the immortal life, to praise God forever. And which shall it be? It should be the burden of your life to have every child that God has committed to your trust receive the divine mold.—The Signs of the Times, January 14, 1886.
From Reflecting Christ - Page 168