Gospel Work - ParentingBro. David Chancellor
3/10/2002 6:00 PM
There are some of us that have been given a gospel work to do. The role of a parent is equally important to that of a pastor in regard to training a child. You have a "small" congregation. We would like to see young families brought tot he congregation. Just having parents that know God doesn't guarantee that the children will. This says, "train." The things you teach so far as knowledge goes are probably things that will be least remembered. Training is how you live. It becomes a way of life. Establish for the child the kind of habits they will have in life. Your habits, if they are not good ones, are the challenge you must overcome when you find God. You don't have to continue a life of sin just because your parents raised you that way. There is a trend among children to do as their parents did. Habits, by themselves, aren't bad. It is just bad habits that are bad. There are good habits. Reading God's word and spending time in prayer are good habits. The goal of parents isn't just to be strict, but to teach obedience. As parents, when you speak, have something to say. If it is important enough to say, it is important enough to enforce. It is a sad thing if a child is taught to disobey nicely. It is still not obedience. God is not impressed with nice disobedience. It is not submission to God and his word. Parents should train their children to be respectful of others. Respect sometimes serves you pretty well, even as an adult. If you have really built a habit, even good habits are hard to break. Parents should also train their children in industry and responsibility. Train them to see work and go do it. Businesses want people to take responsibility and to take it seriously. They want employees they can count on to get the job done. People have to take responsibility for things to get done. If we say we will do it, we need to do it. Stand by your word and choose your responsibilities carefully. Some choices we make in life influence what we do and don't get to do. Sometimes it isn't fun or enjoyable, but we need to keep our word. A lazy life is not a happy life. The military does some training. They want discipline; the ability to push when required and to go when the going is needed. A child may grow up with great habits, but that isn't salvation. Yet, it will make life much easier. You can't train or teach a child into salvation. It only gives enough knowledge to seek after God. Training can make salvation more enjoyable. You don't have so many bad habits to break.
1 Kings 22:51-52
This is one picture of what goes on in the world. This one followed the way of his parents. The responsibility of the parents is here. Children follow their parents' example. Ahab was a pouting man. Parents shouldn't want their children to pout. It isn't a wonder that the child grew up as he did with parents like this. Parents need to train their children not to follow the fads and fashions. They can teach them to say no. Many children of today have been trained poorly. The chains can be broken. Even if poorly trained, that can be overcome to serve God. Parents, be good examples. Many people reach a sad end because of bad training.
1 Kings 9:1-5
This is God's promise to Solomon. Solomon had a good example of what God wanted his people to be. Sometimes a parent may fail and not get across what needs to be gotten across. Consider the overall trend. The pattern needs to be sound, even if sometimes you fail. Parents should be obedient to God and to the laws of the land. Set a good example for your children. Work within the law of the land. If people will live what they believe it will affect the way the government is run. Be a good example of what God would have his people to be.
It is good for children to see their parents living what they teach. This is part of nurturing. Children are to be trained, not broken. It takes time and care. Christ took time to straighten that which was bruised, without breaking it. You don't want to quench the life or enthusiasm, but to have the fire of Christ within. We would channel it to the work and purpose of God. The parents aren't here to decide what purpose their children will accomplish, but to train them to be used by God. This is an unseen part of the congregation - influence and work done outside of church services. We want the children to have the tools to fill whatever place God has for them. The work begins at home. It is more than teaching. It is training. What kind of habits will they have when they are grown?