I previously introduced the wonderful Heidelberg Catechism as the choice for our home. My wife more recently commented on the practical impact that the Heidelberg has had in our home recently. This catechism is surrounded by practical purpose. I'll be doing a book review closer to the end of the year on our devotional materials that work through this catechism.
But for the time being it is time to catch up with Kenzie. She is already multiple questions past this one (we aren't going Q by Q but jumping ahead to easier answers and valuable questions). God's law. God's requirements. What does the Bible day? What would God have us do? What does the Lord require of us (Deut 10:12)?
Q. What does God’s law require of us?
A. Christ teaches us this in summary in Matthew 22:37-40:
“‘You shall love the Lord your God
with all your heart,
and with all your soul,
and with all your mind.’
This is the greatest and first commandment.
“And a second is like it:
‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’
“On these two commandments hang
all the law and the prophets.”
Kenzie loves this question. She doesn't love it enough to say it in front of her Grambo (like Rambo but with a Gr in front? Yeah don't ask) but she loves it just enough. We must also admit that we're cheating slightly. We use the Deuteronomy version and render the final "with all" as might and not mind. I'm confident the Lord will forgive us.
The reason K loves this question is that she already knew most of it. Deuteronomy 6:5 was the second verse she memorized and she cruised right through this question. But more recently it has become an excellent verse and catechism questions to remind her of during times of discipline. Every night we recite this Q and A. She loves its inclusion in our liturgy. But she isn't always so excited about its inclusion into our discipline.
Wether it be trouble with the brother, cousin or friend Kenzie occasionally requires a reminder of what God requires of her. He requires love of Him and love of others. The two come together and not separately. And my daughter is learning that this isn't merely church language or part of worship. It is part of life and God desires for us to enforce our theology in our ethics (thanks Barth she'll get to you next).
This has sobered some of our discipline times. It has lengthened others. But it has allowed me to point to God the Father and His Son Jesus Christ consistently now every time my kid needs a talking to. And let's be honest, we all need a talking to pretty frequently.
Joshua Torrey is the sole proprietor of Torrey Gazette (don't tell Alaina) and the fullness of its editorial process. That means everything wrong with TG can legitimately be blamed on him.