Are you living the life you want your kids to live?
Let me unpack that a little. We all have high aspirations for our children – we want the best for them. So, when they look at us do they have a good example of what “living well” looks like? If your child was sat exactly where you are right now, in twenty years, would you be happy with their growth from where they’re at now? I don’t yet have children, but I know what my answer would be.
That question should be a weighty one to answer. The bad news is that the majority
of honest people would say no, I’m not living the life I want my kids to live. The good news is, believers have grace and more grace.
Parents of little ones are constantly reminded that your children see and hear everything. That time you make a mistake, they’re watching. When you accidentally say a word you shouldn’t, they’re listening. If you claim to be a Christ follower then children are forming their early beliefs based off what you say and more importantly what you do. These early pictures your children receive will shape who they grow to be.
If you don’t sacrifice financially, are your children likely to?
If you don’t give your time to help someone in need, are your kids going to be doing that?
If you don’t volunteer in your church’s nursery, will your kids find the time to serve, anywhere in the church, when they grow up?
There are so many examples of things that pass us by in daily life that our kids see and read in to. While that may seem like I’m adding to discouragement it truly isn’t that:
But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
2 Corinthians 12:9
The truth of the matter is God has entrusted parents with something far greater than they ever deserve to be a part of. He gives us the opportunity to steward an incredible responsibility, and is the rock in which we ought lean to shepherd our children well.
Daniel Darling, of the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission, gives his take on parenting:
Parents are given the task of creating a culture of faith that intentionally uses all of life to point their children toward a lifelong relationship with God.
He doesn’t say parents are given the job of setting a standard of perfection. He doesn’t say parents are solely responsible for their children’s faith commitment either. He simply says that your job as parents is to create a culture in your home, a culture of loving like Jesus loved – spending time loving on the needy and giving sacrificially (He gave something worth more significance than we ever could – himself).
Your job is to point children toward a life-changing, lifelong relationship with God. And you aren’t alone. Your local church is here to support you, and we are to!
– Jared Simpson