Often we think that if our children just watch our walk with Christ it will naturally rub off on them. We do need to be aware of what our children see lived out in us, but God demands more of us in preparing our children for life. He calls us to train them.
To “train up” requires that parents impart wisdom, love, nurture, and discipline to their children so that they become fully equipped and committed to the Lord. “In the way he should go” implies that the training should be according to a child’s unique personality, gifts, and aspirations. It also means that children should be taught to avoid any natural tendencies that might prevent them from making a total commitment to Christ.
In order for training to be effective, children must put into practice what they are taught. Opportunities to demonstrate their spiritual skills must be given to them so that when the real challenges come they will pass the test, both now and for a lifetime.