Follow-up post: Children and chores

Hey there BCU Family!

You have the option of listening to our podcast (click the BCU avatar below to listen), reading the notes or BOTH. In any case, we pray the podcast blesses you. If so, please thumbs up or leave a comment! Thank you and enjoy your study! 

So a couple of weeks ago, I posted a meme on the BCU Instagram account FB3F39BC-AEF0-408C-9A5E-74F63E02D1B1that stated if a child can operate a smartphone, then they can use a household appliance (broom, dustpan, sponge, washer/dryer, etc.) For the most part, a majority of the people agreed with the visual, but we had a few people who had pretty strong objections to the image. Here are a few of the comments in part:

“This is nonsense, that a child can use a smartphone doesn’t mean that they should be using one nor that they should be burdened with the family housework…..”

“….Another post telling parents to use their kids as servants instead of providing and taking care of them as parents should do….”

“…Children are not your maids…The job of children is playing, learning, exploring not being your cleaner…there are no kids chores….forcing jobs on people that are really not their responsibility causes anxiety and resentment.”

“I do not agree with making kids have regular chores….chores that are not normally a child’s responsibility like vacuuming the living room.”

First off, BCU Fam, let me say that everyone is entitled to an opinion, so the fact that people disagreed with me is not point of this post.

Next, I invited all of the respondents to be a part of this post/podcast so we can talk about the image and reasoning behind our responses intelligently, in context and in real-time.

No one took me up on the offer. 🤔

Third, this is not a “clapback” or retaliatory post, rather in speaking to the Lord about it, this is an opportunity to take a deeper dive in what the Word of God says about training up children and where responsibilities come into play.

Let’s begin with our anchor verse: “Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it” (Proverbs 22:6).

In addition, let us look at the meaning of the word “train” and “child”.

The Hebrew word for train is chanak and it means, “to initiate, dedicate, discipline, or train up” [Strong’s concordance]. Training is a dedicated regimen that directs, regulates, and impresses upon the child, in every manner of life, the path to be taken.

The word for “child” in this verse is the Hebrew word na’ar and it defines a child as a boy or girl from infancy through adolescence. This training is not intended to start at age 5, 10 or 13, but instead from the moment the child leaves the womb.(

This tells me that as parents/guardians, we are not only responsible for instructing our children in the ways of the Lord, we are also supposed  to teach them how to be responsible in other areas as well.  Training children includes things such as teaching colors, good sportsmanship, safety, playing instruments, study habits, how to drive AND and yes, age-appropriate chores.

As a matter of fact, most young children LOVE to help do things around the house–I have often had to decline their cute little offers because they were not ready for certain tasks. For example, I would not teach a three year-old to handle bathroom cleaners and a sponge or to operate a hot stove because the of their age, impending danger and obvious lack of maturity. However, that same toddler can be lovingly shown how to put toys back in the toy box or throw away a napkin when they are finished with it.

Something else I thought about—in many Christian education (Sabbath or Sunday school), preschool, kindergarten and early elementary classrooms, children often sing a “clean-up” song as they discard snack papers, put away crayons and push in chairs.  These are chore fundamentals that, in time and with age/maturity, naturally progress into other responsibilities, such as folding clothes, running the vacuum or putting away the dishes.

Chores are not about adults sipping lemonade under a shade tree, harshly barking orders while the kids scrub clothes by hand in 90-degree weather!  Training is about finding fun and creative ways to walk a child through how to take clothes down to the laundry room or properly load the dishwasher. Parents giving children age-appropriate chores is more about the life-time benefits, challenges and lessons that come with contributing to something and being part of a team. 

For example, my daughter learned to play the saxophone as a middle-schooler. In addition to practicing, (we’ll get back to that shortly), she was responsible for the care and cleaning of her instrument, rather than me doing it for her–that was her chore, her responsibility.  In addition, practicing daily was essential in order for her to get proficient in learning the sax and to be able to play her part in the band (aka the team).  Did she always want to practice and take care of her instrument? Of course not! Very often TV shows, friends, or the phrase”I don’t feel like it today” interfered.  (In fact, that “I don’t feel like it today ” stalks me as an adult from time to time! Lol!!) Still, she needed to understand that we don’t just abandon our responsibilities because something more amusing comes along. That contribution/responsibility/teamwork concept was relatively easier to reinforce because it was taught early on, versus teaching it from scratch at age 13. In many situations, that’s where the anxiety and resentment one of the respondents talked about can creep in.

My final thoughts here? The meme did not say nor did my post infer the ONLY thing  children should is do housework, there was nothing mentioned that said children should do ALL adult housework, nor did it say children should never play, explore, and have fun. I am grateful for my balanced childhood where my siblings and I learned all about Jesus, climbed trees, and took turns doing the dishes and other household chores. God has blessed us to grow up to be productive adults with no adverse scarring from our time with the vacuum cleaner.  Lest you think my childhood was so long ago and my experience outdated, just today I got a chance to speak with a young man from our church, Elijah, age 15, about this very subject.

After presenting both sides of the debate, Elijah admitted he wasn’t always crazy about his chores, BUT he couldn’t see life without them as they taught/teach him valuable organizational skills! This young man attends Sunday school/church with his family regularly, has great grades, excellent manners, is respectful, focused and knows exactly what he wants to do with his life post high school. Can you see Proverbs 22:16 in effect?

BCU Fam, God has made us all (including children) with a certain degree of learning capacity and ability to carry out age-appropriate duties. If a child has the aptitude to operate an $800 smartphone with proficiency, then he/she can also be taught to push a button on a household cleaning appliance or operate a manual one, like a broom with little difficulty.  I stand by my post and the Lord stands with me!

So what are your thoughts about this controversial topic? Is it biblically wrong to teach children how to do certain things at home? Should kids not do anything at all from toddlers to teens except play and do whatever they want? Did you have house responsibilities? Let’s talk some more in the chat section below!

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Thank you SO much for stopping by. God bless, keep and make His face to shine upon you as you #StayOnTheWall!



Additional references:

#SpeechTherapy | Forgiveness | Offenses | Part 2

As usual, you can enjoy the audio podcast (by clicking on the icon below) read the transcript notes or both! Either way, be encouraged by the Word of God and share this with a friend! God bless you!

In preparing to talk about forgiveness, last time, we took a closer look at the first part of Matthew 18:1-14, and gleaned a few points:

1) In order to the greatest in the kingdom of Heaven, we need to be converted as children.
—they are not puffed up or prideful
—they need to be served/taken care of
—they take you at your word
—they have amazing faith

2) Offenses (snares, traps, trap-sticks, stumbling blocks, temptations, entrapper, enticers, obstacles) WILL COME! Was anyone tested on that? Oooh-ooh WHEE. I KNOW I was! Had to deal with the ungrateful one, the rude one, the one not listening, technology acting up, a two-hour traffic jam, phone calls about things that should have been taken care of, people not on post…these things sound mundane, but these attacks came one after the other, were long (some of them) unexpected and intense. I was asking for grace and repenting—but once you know the Word and what to look out for, you really become more alert and able to fight in the Spirit in prayer and not in the flesh with unkind words, attitudes or gestures. God allows them to teach is to stay in the Spirit and not react in the flesh, the enemy brings them to get you out of Spirit and KEEP you in the flesh.

3)Jesus promises to deal with the offenders—it’s better that a millstone is hung around the neck and they cast into the sea. While we may be clapping for the impending punishment for the offenders, let’s keep two things in mind:

–Rejoice not when thine enemy falleth, and let not thine heart be glad when he stumbles: lest the Lord see it, and it displease him, and he turn away his wrath from him (Proverbs 24:16).

–Let’s check ourselves to make sure we are not practicing offenders mentioned in Matthew 18. The onus is on US. Not THEM.

It’s one thing to mess up occasionally, but choosing to lie on someone, being the marital issue, to have a bad attitude because “you don’t care today”, intentionally, maliciously, willfully, spitefully doing, saying or acting or retaliating, in ways that offend someone (whether or not they “deserve it”) is just wrong. What is giving the guy that cut you off a dirty look going to do? How does that help anything? Will it have a lasting impression on him? Will he remember the look? Did it teach him a lesson? He’s in front of you.

We can’t practice maliciousness, wrath, hatred and such and expect to make it into the kingdom of God, even if you were offended badly. Jesus has that covered coming up in Matthew 18 starting at verse 15.

 Moreover if thy brother shall trespass against thee, go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone: if he shall hear thee, thou hast gained thy brother.

HOW many disagreements would be squashed if we just went to Lilly May and talked about it, rather than go all-around her? Do we GO TO the person and handle these matters quietly and one-on-one? Or is a snide post or rant on social media the way we do it? Or maybe we go to the one or two more first instead of going to the person? The story gets back to the person and it’s all blown up AND others are upset with them. Discord. Flesh. Offensive. Not God’s way. We simply go to the person, politely state our case, listen to their case, we talk it over and we end peacefully.  If the one-to-one approach doesn’t pan out, Jesus outlines the next step.

Verse 16:  But if he will not hear thee, then take with thee one or two more, that in the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established.

If the trespassing party is not cooperative, we are not to stomp away. Rather WE go the extra mile and gather honest, non-biased, trustworthy folks that can accurately account the dispute details/conversion, rather than instigate or spread your business around. Pray about and choose your witnesses carefully. Finally if that approach stalls, Jesus says:

Verse 17:  And if he shall neglect to hear them, tell it unto the church: but if he neglect to hear the church, let him be unto thee as an heathen man and a publican.
This is the very last resort—do not get the church officials involved until after you have done steps 1 and 2. Ideally, the alleged trespasser will finally be ready to settle the matter properly, so he’s not classified as a heathen or publican (tax collector). In those days (and some of say it now), publicans ILLEGALLY taxed you on whatever they wanted, ON DEMAND. Obviously they lived well (off ill-gotten money), but were very despised. In fact,  Luke 19 tells the story of Zacchaeus who was CHIEF, among the publicans (19:2). After meeting Jesus, Zacchaeus repented and said he would give half his goods to the poor and would restore overtaxation four fold. Talk about offenses and forgiveness…Let’s see what else Jesus said regarding the church proceeding. Yes, the next few verses of Matthew 18 are all about that.

Matthew 18:18 Verily I say unto you, Whatsoever ye shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever ye shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.
 Matthew 18:19 Again I say unto you, That if two of you shall agree on earth as touching any thing that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of my Father which is in heaven.
Matthew 18:20  For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.”

In doing some study, verse 18 the term “binding and loosing” was common Jewish phrasing meaning “to declare something forbidden (bind) or declare it allowed (loosed)” In this case it referred to the discipline of the offender or how the situation would be handled. That ties into verse 19, because Christ in heaven officially makes valid what is done in His name and in accordance to His Word on earth. Decisions are binding in both places and the Word is loosed on earth for His purpose. Finally in verse 20, the context with touching and agreeing is for the purpose of two people coming together to settle differences and naturally Jesus is there in the midst.

Now many of us have heard these verses and used them (myself included), for praying binding and loosing “bad” things and loosing “good” things, praying about something with someone (touching and agreeing), or for poorly attended services (where two or three are gathered). As students of the Bible who seek to rightly divide the Word with the help of the Lord, we’ve been using those Scriptures out of context. Think about it–isn’t Jesus in the midst when we are alone? Does not He abide down on the inside of us, if we are Holy Ghost filled according to Acts 2:38? Why would that verse be about church attendance when He was just talking about how to handle a dispute? Jesus just doesn’t switch tracks like that, BCU family! Now that we know better, we will do better, with the help of the Lord. Amen? Amen!

Well BCU family, that’s our podcast for today–I trust the Word was enlightening and stirs up a change in your heart and spirit. Lord will, we’ll wrap up this series next time we’re together.  Thank you for tuning in, commenting, subscribing and telling a friend! Until we’re together again, God bless, keep and make His face to shine upon you and…#StayOnTheWall!





Treasure hunt…

Hey family!

For the second time in as many years, the local and national news ( have highlighted “Black Friday” shoppers who are already camped out in parking lots awaiting for all the bargains merchants are offering. While I am certainly NOT against sales, saving money, purchasing things you need or even desire, I wonder a couple of things.

First, what message does this send our families and children? Thanksgiving is traditionally a special day set aside (and in addition to all the other 364 days we give thanks) for families to come together, share a meal and count the blessings God gives us. While I suppose that can be done in a pop-up tent in a parking lot, is the specialness of that time dismissed by rushing the security guard who opens the door? Trampling the lady who steps in front of you? Pouting and cussing the clerk if they sell out of the $200 56 inch flat screen television before you get one? Are we giving God thanks while loading the cart? Are we going into debt trying to lay up our treasures on earth?

Second and more importantly, how does God feel about this? Again, while there is no sin in getting a bargain (we need to be good stewards), are we putting material gain over family time? In 5 years, Lord will, is getting the Wii more important than sitting around the table and recanting stories from when Junebug and Haskell were little? Is there any value left in building relationships, friendships or just enjoying company of other people? What about just thanking God for life, health, strength, food and whatever He gives us richly to enjoy? When I was a child, my siblings were just content to stuff ourselves and take a nap!

Bottom line: Yes, I realize this is America and we can choose to celebrate holidays anyway we choose. If we think about it, every holiday that comes around is focused on the deal of the day, rather than God or even a family aspect, which God created. And if we are not careful, we can get sucked in to believing that happiness is just a purchase away.

“Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal; but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also” (Matthew 6:19-21).

What we value the most in our hearts comes out of our mouths and actions. As the coming of Christ comes closer, my prayer is that The Lord will be reflected in our speech and actions over the upcoming holidays and all year round!

God bless you and your family this Thanksgiving and always!



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