Parenting made simple and easy.
Our spouse and children are one of life’s blessings given to us by God. God has a plan and purpose for every individual, every family, and every child that is born. Today I want to speak on effective parenting.
GOD’S PLAN FOR THE FAMILY
See what God spoke to Abraham regarding his children. Genesis 18:18-19 18 Abraham will surely become a great and powerful nation, and all nations on earth will be blessed through him. 19 For I have chosen him, so that he will direct his children and his household after him to keep the way of the Lord by doing what is right and just, so that the Lord will bring about for Abraham what he has promised him.”
Remember God has chosen Abraham and given him promises. In order for God’s promises to be fulfilled Abraham will have to direct his children and his household in fulfilling what God has asked them to do. So we have a responsibility to direct our family in the way of the Lord.
BIBLICAL CONCEPT ABOUT CHILDREN
Children are God’s possession.
Psalm 127:3 Children are a heritage from the Lord.
The term heritage means property or possession, which refers to the ancestral property that we inherit from our father. Children are the Lord’s possession, the Lord’s property. God assigns them to be grown under the parents’ care. So our children belong to God, we are just caretakers. I have to take care of them diligently.
Children are a reward.
Psalm 127:3b Offspring a reward from him.
Reward means – gift of appreciation, of pleasure, of joy.
Children are never to be viewed as a sign of God’s displeasure or His punishment for man’s sin. The fruit of the womb is the trophy of God’s love. Wise parents and grandparents take pleasure in children. Children bring joy into our lives. A world without children would be a dull world. Their zest, their laughter, their excitement, their unique way of viewing things adds to the fullness to the life of parents.
Every child is unique.
Hebrews 11:23 NASB By faith Moses, when he was born, was hidden for three months by his parents, because they saw he was a beautiful child; and they were not afraid of the king’s edict.
Moses’ parents considered him beautiful, a special child. They already had two children by now, Miriam and Aaron and the king’s edict was against Moses. But the parents found him beautiful. Now how do you know which child of yours is beautiful, talented or smart? Every child is beautiful. Every child is uniquely formed by God.
I have two children; Sam and grace. Both of them are so different.
Our Indian mindset segregates children based on their colour, capacity to study, male and female. Some consider girls are not beautiful and some kill them in the womb and some put their newborn near garbage bins or railway tracks, some differentiate beauty based on color and some on looks. If you are unable to love your children equally and treat them special, it is the heathen mindset. Kingdom mindset sees every child equal and special. Remember, there is also no accident child in the Kingdom. You would not have planned for a child, but God formed that child fearfully and wonderfully in the mother’s womb.
Psalm 78:1-4 1My people, hear my teaching; listen to the words of my mouth. 2I will open my mouth with a parable; I will utter hidden things, things from of old—3things we have heard and known, things our ancestors have told us. 4We will not hide them from their descendants; we will tell the next generation the praiseworthy deeds of the Lord, his power, and the wonders he has done.
Godly parenting is to revolve the family around the centrality of God.
Psalm 78:4 We will not hide them from their descendants; we will tell the next generation the praiseworthy deeds of the Lord, his power, and the wonders he has done.
Children are not highest value – God is. Yes, children are precious, children are a God’s possession, children are a reward from God, and they are special but children are not the highest value – God is. God should be the number one priority of the parents. For that case even your husband-wife relationship is not one the number one priority. God comes above my spouse and my children. Godly parenting revolve the family around the centrality of God.
Godly parenting is to teach God’s word.
Psalm 78:5-6 5He decreed statutes for Jacob and established the law in Israel, which he commanded our ancestors to teach their children 6so the next generation would know them, even the children yet to be born, and they in turn would tell their children.
God has a law, the word of God. And we have that teaching in a book, the Bible. If God is more important than anything, then the Bible is more important.
We are to teach the testimony of God to our children. Ephesians 6:4 Fathers do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord.
Deuteronomy 6:6-7 6And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. 7 You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise.
If you have to teach your children the Bible, you first have to learn the word of God.
RESULT OF GODLY PARENTING
Psalm 78:7-8 7Then they would put their trust in God and would not forget his deeds but would keep his commands. 8They would not be like their ancestors—a stubborn and rebellious generation, whose hearts were not loyal to God, whose spirits were not faithful to him.
Children put their confidence in God.
The knowledge of God does not lead them to self-sufficiency but their trust and confidence in God.
Children would obey God.
When our children are confident in God, they will follow the commandments of God.
Ephesians 6:4 Fathers do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord.
Colossians 3:21 Fathers do not embitter your children, or they will become discouraged.
Now, Paul in the letter to the Ephesians addresses only to the fathers.
In Paul’s day, especially among non-Christian and non-Jewish households the father was like a dictator. He had the choice on which child to love and which child to ignore. Under the Roman law a father had power of life and death over his children. When a child was born it was placed at its father’s feet. If the man picked the newborn baby up, it would be accepted into the household. If he turned and walked away, it was disposed of in much the same way as aborted children are today. In the first century the father made the decision and the mother had no say. Therefore whatever Paul wanted to instruct the parents he addressed to the fathers, keeping in mind the society then.
In today’s context the Bible holds both the father and mother responsible for raising your children.
Do not exasperate or embitter your children.
Exasperate – to make your children very angry or to annoy greatly.
Embitter – to continue to make your children angry over an extended period of time.
Tom was just 12 when the Scouts troop planned a family camp out. He was thrilled and could hardly wait to rush home to invite his parents. Tom wanted so much to show them all he had learned in scouting, and he was so proud when they said they would go with him.
When the Friday of the camp finally came, Tom was ready, put everything in his bag, kept it out on the porch, ready to stuff it in dad’s car the moment he arrived from work. When he looked back mom was still not ready and he shouted, “Mummy we are getting late, get ready. We need to go as soon as daddy arrives.” They were supposed to meet at the school at 5 pm to go to the campsite with other friends.
Dad did not turn up on time and Tom was pacing up and down the gate of his house. When dad finally came it was 7 pm, Tom knew it was too late and kept quiet. Dad said, “Tom, I am tired and we will get up first thing in the morning and join the others.” Tom was disappointed but hoped for the next morning.
Tom was up early morning.
Not finding dad he knocked dad’s room. Dad said they would leave around 7 am but dad never came out of his room until 9 am.
When finally dad came out saw he said, “Tom I am tired. I hope you understand me now that you are a ‘big boy,’ let’s go for the next camp.” Tom was heartbroken, but kept quiet. Soon dad went inside put his golf clothes in, took his golf clubs and stuffed it in the car and went golfing to keep his commitment with his friends.
That is when Tom realized that dad and mom never wanted to go with him to the campsite but for dad golf was more important and for mom off on Saturday was more important than Tom.
Ways parents embitter their children:
Smother them. Never giving them a chance to take chances.
Favoritism. Favoring one kid over the other.
Comparing your kids with one another.
Pushing their achievement beyond reasonable bounds.
Failing to make the child feel wanted. Always treating them like they are intruding on your life.
Using love as a tool for reward and punishment.
Physical and verbal abuse.
Teasing and taunting them.
Discipline your children.
Hebrews 12:9-10 9 Moreover, we have all had human fathers who disciplined us and we respected them for it. How much more should we submit to the Father of spirits and live! 10 They disciplined us for a little while as they thought best; but God disciplines us for our good, in order that we may share in his holiness.
Proverbs 23:13-14 Do not withhold discipline from a child; if you punish them with the rod, they will not die. Punish them with the rod and save them from death.
Proverbs 13:24 Whoever spares the rod hates their children, but the one who loves their children is careful to discipline them.
Proverbs 19:18 Discipline your children, for in that there is hope; do not be a willing party to their death.
Proverbs 29:17 Discipline your children, and they will give you peace; they will bring you the delights you desire.
Discipline your children in the Lord. Discipline your children in moral values.
Pray for your children.
Pray that your children receive Jesus Christ, that they grow in love, honesty, integrity, purity, mercy etc.
David prayed for Solomon. 1 Chronicles 29:18-19 18 Lord, the God of our fathers Abraham, Isaac and Israel, keep these desires and thoughts in the hearts of your people forever, and keep their hearts loyal to you. 19 And give my son Solomon the wholehearted devotion to keep your commands, statutes and decrees and to do everything to build the palatial structure for which I have provided.
Parents be a good role model.
We as children are just the examples of our parents. You react to your circumstances just the way your parents reacted to their circumstances. Always know your children are watching you and you need be good role models to your kids.
2 Chronicles 26:3-4 3 Uzziah was sixteen years old when he became king, and he reigned in Jerusalem fifty-two years. His mother’s name was Jekoliah; she was from Jerusalem. 4He did what was right in the eyes of the Lord, just as his father Amaziah had done.
You provide your child an example, an identity, moral and social values. Spend time with your children, let them see godly example in you.
Survey: Dads spend 8 minutes a day talking to their children. Working mothers spend 11 minutes a day. Stay-at home moms spend less than 30 minutes a day on average.
Spend time with them, coach them, play with them, have fun with them. If you do not spend time with your children, they will they will get on what family values are and morality is from their friends outside.
RESPONSIBILITIES OF CHILDREN
Looking at what the Bible says about children to the parents we too can get some input on the role of children towards their parents.
Children are under the parent’s authority.
Genesis 18:19 For I have chosen him, so that he will direct his children and his household after him to keep the way of the Lord by doing what is right and just, so that the Lord will bring about for Abraham what he has promised him.
Children always remember two authorities: First God and then your parents. God has placed this authority. You have to respect that authority. Since God has put you under your parents it is a sin against God when you rebel against your parents.
Children obey your parents.
Ephesians 6:1 Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right.
Proverbs 3:11-12 11 My son, do not despise the Lord’s discipline, and do not resent his rebuke, 12 because the Lord disciplines those he loves, as a father the son he delights in.
Ephesians 6:2-3 2 “Honor your father and mother”—which is the first commandment with a promise. 3“so that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth.”
Proverbs 23:22 Listen to your father, who gave you life, and do not despise your mother when she is old.
As children you are to obey your parents, this is the command of God. When you obey your parents you are fulfilling the command of honouring your parents.
We are today going to make a commit before God as a family. Ask God the ability to raise up your kids and children God wants you to be the best children. Shall we stand to our feel as I pray for your family.