Man Up – submit!

Puzzle Pieces #6

The created order shows that men are to lead their households in submission to Christ (Gen 2, Eph 5 & 6). I want to specifically look at what this means for parenting.

Men/fathers, our responsibilities lie in submitting to Christ as our Lord, loving our wives and children in obedience to God and ensuring our families are washed in the gospel so we may present them to Him without wrinkle or stain or blemish.

Men/fathers, study God’s word and be in relationship with our heavenly father continually. Let your status and identity as an heir in the kingdom of heaven and co-heir with Christ be what defines you. Not the status you achieve as part of your work, not your bank balance as evidence of God’s blessing, not the amount of service you do for your church and His kingdom. Rather, look constantly at the cross of Christ and be thankful for the mercies given through His death and resurrection. Seek the Holy Spirit’s work to get rid of pride. Apologise.

Men/fathers, take the responsibilities of leading your family seriously. Be in control of your finances, delight in your family and the time you spend with them. Love and protect them by knowing what movies, songs and computer games they are exposed to and take a stand when they are not beneficial. Get accountability software on your home and work computers, tablets and devices and work out the settings on the TV/computer/iPods to limit content ratings – for your purity and theirs.

Men/fathers, take the lead in reading the Word of God with your family. You cannot present your wife and children to God without wrinkle, stain or blemish, only Jesus can do that. Wash them in the Gospel of Jesus and do not leave this to your wife. Of course she can teach the bible to children and will do so continually as a mother, but do not hide behind her by leaving that responsibility on her shoulders. Do it before going to work, or get home from work before the kids are in bed so you can lead in this way. Be intentional, take responsibility, man up!

 


Do you find these posts helpful in parenting to the Glory of God?
If you do, then I’m sure others would too. 

Please SHARE these posts, and in doing so pray for a generation of kids who have had the gospel of Jesus taught & modelled to them by their parents.

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Can parents do enough?

Photo: Rauno Träskelin

The desire to be a godly parent is noble and honouring to God. There is certainly much we could do – family devotions, praying with & for our kids, letting church blow up our weekend, having sponsor children, being hospitable, praying for and supporting missionaries, being cross-cultural missionaries, serving the church in many and varied ways, always being early to church, telling our friends about Jesus, facilitating our kids’ telling of Jesus to their friends, going to christian holiday camps/events, openly discussing our financial partnership with church with our kids. Really, the list is endless…..

Modelling godliness to our children, however, has a HUGE danger – making our (and their) acceptance by God seem as though it is based on what we do. It’s not! Jesus has brought us to God by dying for our sins, the righteous for the unrighteous (1 Pet 3:18). Nothing we have or could do will make any difference. The dangers for parents are feeling guilty if our kids reject God, or proud if they do not. The dangers for our kids is seeing christianity as a list of rules to keep, and self-righteousness if they do okay at it. All of these scenarios would be a tragedy, none of which I hope you are aiming for.

So how do we prevent this from happening? Doing more? I’ll trust you can see the error in that logic. Not do anything? Borrowing Paul’s phrase – BY NO MEANS!

What then shall we do to show our kids it is all about Jesus? Exactly that – show them it is ALL about Jesus.

Every time you pray, make it about Jesus’ intercession.
Every time you go to church, make it about Jesus’ gathering.
Every time you say grace before a meal, make it about Jesus’ provision.
Every time you write a letter to your sponsor child, make it about Jesus’ mercy.
Every time you show hospitality, make it about Jesus’ adoption.
Every time you serve, make it about Jesus’ sacrifice.
Every time you discipline, make it about Jesus’ atonement.
Every time you [INSERT ANY ACTION HERE] – make. it. about. Jesus!

By making everything about Jesus, all glory will go to Jesus. Isn’t that what you are striving for? Don’t get caught up in doing, get caught up in Jesus!

But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit,  whom he poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Saviour, so that, having been justified by his grace, we might become heirs having the hope of eternal life. This is a trustworthy saying. And I want you to stress these things, so that those who have trusted in God may be careful to devote themselves to doing what is good. These things are excellent and profitable for everyone.  

Titus 3:4-8 (italics added)

 


Do you find these posts helpful in parenting to the Glory of God?
If you do, then I’m sure others would too. 

Please SHARE these posts, and in doing so pray for a generation of kids who have had the gospel of Jesus taught & modelled to them by their parents.

Secrets of being a GOOD family

Perfect Family Photo

The good family doesn’t stick out, their kids are well behaved (because they’ve been parented well), they have nice jobs and always send out Christmas cards. You’d love having this family over for anything – entertaining, birthday parties, car-pooling the kids to their activities, etc. It would come as no surprise to find out they went to church. Then again, I know plenty of families like this who have no interest in God and see no need for Jesus – they have nothing to be saved from – they’re good and they’re nice!

The danger for such a family, if they want to be gospel centred, is being acceptable to God. Raising nice children makes us look good as parents, but does not gain us brownie points with God. Well behaved children are liked and respected (and get good jobs) but are in danger of thinking this also makes them right with God. This type of Christian Parenting (having biblical morals & values) is actually Pharisaical Parenting.

Gospel parenting (christian parenting for Christ’s sake) doesn’t aim to please Jesus, it aims to teach Jesus. Godly parents don’t aim to lead like Jesus, rather lead their kids to Jesus. Noah, Abraham, Jacob, Moses, Samson, Samuel, King David, King Solomon & Saul (Paul the Apostle) are often held up as Godly men. They were certainly used by God in mighty ways but none were considered righteous by their actions. They were used by God to point to Jesus – His death and resurrection makes us right with God. His righteousness is given to us, He took our sin and He took our punishment for it!

Your salvation is not because of you or about you, it’s about Jesus, so let your parenting be about Jesus, point your kids towards Jesus and pray that Jesus’ perfection be accounted to them (because you know they’re not – right?) so you can stand side-by-side as brothers and sister in Christ when He returns.

Being good is good, being saved by Jesus is better – immeasurably, eternally!

 


Do you find these posts helpful in parenting to the Glory of God?
If you do, then I’m sure others would too. 

Please SHARE these posts, and in doing so pray for a generation of kids
who have had the gospel of Jesus taught & modelled to them by their parents.