First, let us begin by emphatically declaring that is the parents and not the church are given the primary responsibility for calling the next generation to hope in God. The church serves as a supplementary role, reinforcing the biblical nurture that is occurring in the home. – Charles Spurgeon
The Goal? Matthew 28:18-20. That’s our north star as Christian parents. It’s what guides us and direct our calling. Our goal is to make disciples, and our greatest mission field is right down the hallway. And God has given you every gift and every platform to see that come into reality.
Many surveys by sociologists have concluded that the greatest influence on the life of a child is not their sports coach, their Youth Pastor/Kids Pastor, or their best friends. It’s you. It’s the parents. There is no greater social influencer in the life of your kids than you. They watch you. They pattern their life after you. They model things after you. They walk where you walk. They talk how you talk (let’s be honest…sometime when we hear our kids say some of the things we like to say…we cringe. Or maybe that’s just me) Volkswagen knows it, and so should we. God designed it this way. Let’s leverage our calling for the sake of the great commission in our homes.
Here are a few thoughts I want to pass along to encourage you in your task to make disciples in your home.
- It’s your calling, but you cannot do it alone: Deut. 6:4-9 is a call to the community of Israel. The community of Israel is made up of families. Families walking through life together. No man was created to do life alone. You (the parents) are the primary disciplers of your kids, but you need the church. You need an echoing voice to spur your kids on to Christ. You need the church to help you see some blindspots that you may not see in your own life and the life of your kids. The best thing you can do for the spiritual health of your child is to not seclude them from their peers in the local church, but to help them actively engage in an environment outside the home where the gospel is preached, lived out, and done with joy! Find a church community that loves the gospel and your kids.
- Till the Soil, Plant the Seed: What I mean by that is pretty simple. Don’t just teach the gospel to your kids through proclamation, but learn to ask good questions. When we learn to ask good questions, the soil of the heart begins to be cultivated. Asking good questions tills up the hardness of the heart…and then you speak the truth of the gospel in those moments when the soil has been worked. My personal belief is that when we ask good questions, moments of proclamation (sewing of the seed) can fall on better soil for the gospel to take root. Be a great question asker.
- Start Somewhere: It’s not too late. Your kids may be teenagers in the home. You have no pattern of time in the word together as a family. No rhythm for prayer. No intentionality of asking them things about the kingdom of God. Who cares! Start now. Today is a new day. The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases. His mercies are new every morning. It’s not too late. Do not settle for sideline Christian Parenting. The coach has called you and equipped you run the play. Get in there. Even if it’s the 4th quarter of life with your kids in the home….put the ball in the end zone and finish strong. He is faithful.