Do you view the local church family of which you are a part in a PARTNER role or a PRIMARY role when it comes to your kids? I don’t know many parents who would ever say they view the church in the primary role of raising their kids, but too often when it comes to disciple-making, this is the default thought and the unstated view.
As parents, how much focused attention and creative energy and quantity time are you giving into these areas of development for your children?
their awareness of the BIG story of GOD and how their stories are defined and secured and purposed by Him
- their ability to not only articulate the Gospel but also to translate its gracious and loving and securing and compelling aspects into their daily lives
- their understanding of how to read and study and apply the many rich and complex and beautiful stories found in the books of the Bible
- their focus on more than just what they want to do and want to be but also on how they are giving into what others are doing and want to become
- their propensity toward confession and contriteness
- their willingness to listen well and learn much
- their growing gratefulness for the gracious, merciful, loving Gospel of Jesus
And just to clarify, here is this guy’s short, petty, lacking, but hopefully close-to-adequate summary of that grand, gracious Gospel:
the Gospel _ that news that God, even before He made us, knew we couldn’t get this life right or our behavior better or our insecurities secured or our loneliness overcome. So, even before we were sinners, He had already planned to come in skin right near to us to assure us of His undeserved love, to forgive us for wanting to know more than the life He offered, to remind us of His desire to be with us, to demonstrate His faithfulness to keep a promise even though we couldn’t, and to invite us along with Him to continue to announce and declare and embody this same good news to all who are ashamed and hopeless and insecure and alone and have lost their way.
The Gospel is more than worth spending our entire lives discovering its impact on our identity, learning the wisdom of how Jesus secures us, living to love because of how the Spirit compels us, and growing in gratefulness for how God has restored us.
The question for us as parents – WILL WE ASK JESUS TO WRECK US AND RESTORE US WITH THIS GOSPEL SO MUCH SO THAT WE CAN’T HELP BUT WANT TO GIVE OUR FOCUSED ATTENTION AND CREATIVE ENERGY AND QUANTITY TIME INTO LEARNING AND LIVING THE GOSPEL OF JESUS WITH OUR KIDS?
We need a church family to partner with us together in this. We don’t need to view the church as the primary disciple-maker of our kids. We have dropped them off for church activity long enough. May we be the church together with our kids and together as respective families, encouraging and praying for and equipping one another as parents to grow our kids with grace and send our kids with gospel.