My husband and I enjoy watching DIY (Do-It-Yourself) shows. You know, the one’s that highlight a common housewife remodeling an entire bathroom by herself. Or, what about the novice who manages to paint a house in a weekend without getting a drop of paint on his clothes. Although I admire their enthusiasm and can relate to the satisfaction experienced in self-accomplishment, there are some things we were not designed to do on our own.

In Ephesians 2:9 the apostle Paul tells us that it is by grace that we have been saved, through faith; that salvation is not from any self-effort. Salvation is not by works, so that no one can boast. God created us to be completely helpless in spiritual matters, so that apart from Him we would have no avenue for salvation and be without hope.

But, what about issues that people may not consider spiritual? You know, the activities of everyday life?

Although it may appear that people excel through self-effort, it is God that works in us to accomplish His will. God gives each of us gifts and passions so that His nature would shine through us, reflecting His glory. This is why God spoke the following to His prophet in Jeremiah 9:23-24: This is what the Lord says:“Let not the wise boast of their wisdom or the strong boast of their strength or the rich boast of their riches, but let the one who boasts boast about this: that they have the understanding to know me, that I am the Lord, who exercises kindness, justice and righteousness on earth, for in these I delight,” declares the Lord.

Parents, it can be easy to get caught up in encouraging your children to excel in areas where you recognize their personal strengths. Remember, above all else, the Lord delights in those who pursue a personal relationship with Him. Are you encouraging your children to wholeheartedly seek the Lord Jesus? Are you challenging them to put Him first in every activity? In what practical ways are you training them to boast in the Lord rather than in self-effort?

As your children seek to honor the Lord with their talents and abilities, His supernatural power will be revealed and His name will be glorified!