The Pastor Man is taking the good people of Revolution through a parenting series this summer that is proving to be more challenging than I anticipated. I will be the first to admit my skepticism at someone, who is younger than I am and with younger children than mine, giving advice on parenting. Sorry, Pastor Man, but you know I gotta keep it real. I had to remember I Timothy 4:12 reminded young Timothy not to let anyone look down on him because he was young, but to be an example to those he was called to lead. Okay let’s do this then. I am pleasantly surprised at the challenges he hands out with courage and concern. I gotta hand it to him, it takes courage to hand out parenting advice. It makes people scrutinize the parenting model you employ, not to mention the attacks you open yourself up to. I also must commend the concern he shows for the future faith of the Rev-ers that are still in development. Our church will die if our faith isn’t embraced by the next generation. We must be wise to handle their hearts with tenderness, diligence, and confidence.
We must be tender to the pliability of their hearts. Ephesians 6:4 reminds us not to provoke our kids to anger, but to bring them up in the instruction and discipline of the Lord. We must be wise in how we correct and instruct. Harsh words will only harden their hearts not only to us, their parents, but also to God the ultimate parent. If we are oblivious to how God is trying to work in their hearts, we will contribute to their doubt that He has their best interest in mind. We reflect Him and we make a choice how we will reflect everyday whether we choose to believe it or not.
We must be diligent to do the work that is before us. I am guilty of choosing to indulge myself rather than parent. It’s easier to sit and watch the newest episode on the screen than it is to chat with the munchkins about the way they talk to each other or the seven hours they spent plugged into some electronic device. But it isn’t in their best interest. Laziness will not teach them how to practically apply their faith when life hits them hard, and it will hit them hard.
We must move forward with confidence into the tantrums, the fits, the fights, the tears, the pleading, the negotiating, and the stubbornness. I choose to be confident in the knowledge that the kids in my house are ultimately God’s kids. He will come through for them. He will show up in their story. He will do it with my help or in spite of me. I choose to move with Him seeing as how that will have more success. We’re gonna make mistakes. We’re gonna blow it. The Bible tells us we’re gonna blow it. But God is so much bigger than our mistakes. He is able to do far more than we imagine. I have to let go of the fear that I’m gonna screw them up. I have to trust that God will be faithful to them.
I’m excited about the rest of the series and look forward to future challenges. Thanks Pastor Man for stepping up and holding a mirror to at least my face.