As I wrote in an earlier blog, our worldview will affect our beliefs, decisions, and actions. You can imagine, then, that anything affecting what you believe, what choices you make, and what you do is a potent force. That is the power of a worldview.
In my home, we have used this Character Formation Formula for many years. It works like so:
What you put into your heart and mind is what you think about
What you think about is what you do
What you do becomes your behavior
Your behavior becomes your character
Your character is who you are
When a message sinks into our heart and mind, we begin to dwell on it. The more we hear a message and dwell on it, the more it sticks. The more it sticks, the more we are influenced by it. (In psychology, this is known as the "Law of Exposure.") With time, then, any message heard often enough will begin to show up in our choices. The more we think about a message and act on it, the more it becomes a part of us.
Again, with time, those actions become a pattern of behavior. Day after day of like behavior leads to a lifestyle of thoughts, choices, and actions that mark our character. That is, it marks what we believe, how we act on that belief, and ultimately who we are.
In this war for the heart, mind, and soul, humanistic messages target our children like heat-seeking missiles. Hour upon hour, day upon day, week upon week; unbiblical messages strike our loved ones adversely affecting what they think about, what they believe, and how they form decisions. The end result is brutally predictable.
The messages create beliefs which form in our children’s impressionable hearts and minds. These skewed beliefs lead to decisions which we notice through actions. If those actions are not countered or corrected, they will develop into a pattern of behavior. Once that happens, character formation is nearly complete. Another invasion has been successful.
We, as parents, must understand that our children’s character starts forming way back at the beginning of the formula with what is put into their hearts and minds. It is there that we must fight the battle. Correcting inappropriate actions and behavior is important, but that correction only truly occurs when we get to the root of the issue. That root is found by understanding the thoughts that led to the decision to act in a certain way.
TURNING YOUR HOME INTO WORLDVIEW U
As parents, we need to talk about the five key areas of worldview on a regular basis. Whether it is at the breakfast table, the dinner table, or bedtime devotions, we must make sure to talk about it frequently. It is vital that we work through who God is, why God made man, what absolute truth is, how God views right and wrong, and where our knowledge comes from.
These planned devotions and thought out meal discussions will prove very helpful when unplanned situations arise, which happens often! Because of this, it is vital that you create times to specifically talk about what it means to have a biblical worldview. When you make a family decision, explain why you did so using the Bible.
If a child makes a great decision, show how that decision ties into a biblical worldview. When your kids blow it, make sure they understand how the Bible says they should have acted or spoken. When you blow it, explain to your kids how you did not follow the Bible’s instructions.
When you’re watching TV with the kids and a character says or does something the Bible states is wrong, don’t just let it pass by quietly. Mute the TV, or turn it off, and ask your kids what the character did wrong and why it was wrong. Remember that TV, music, and movies powerfully affect us and our children. Combat these affects by taking the opportunity to discuss with your kids what they saw or heard. Perhaps you will even decide as a family that watching such things isn’t a good idea.
When your kids come home from school, talk to them about their day. Ask your children what they are hearing in school and then compare that with what the Bible says. Show them how it either matches up with Scripture or does not.
Don’t waste any opportunity to turn your home into Worldview University. Don’t let the culture determine what messages will affect your child’s beliefs, decisions, and actions.
We'll speak more on this in the next blog. Stay tuned!