by Joseph Parker
Did you watch the Paul Washer video clip I posted Wednesday? If not, go back and watch it before you continue with the rest of this post (its only 4 minutes).
So I ask the question, “As Christians, when it comes to our kids, what is the bottom line?”
To keep kids safe?
To educate them?
To teach them good life skills?
I say, “Yes…and No.”
I absolutely believe these are well and good, and we should do them…but, as Christians, if we give the children all of these things, but they do not know Jesus what have we really done?
Why did Jesus suffer? What was the purpose in him dying one of the most horrific deaths known to man?
Do we mock him and slap him in the face when we say, as Christians, we are doing all we can by providing an after school program? If we keep them safe by getting them off the streets, provide tutoring and homework assistance, give them very important life skills so they may be successful in the world, are we doing enough?
The “world” is doing this, and in many cases doing it well. They are ALL good things that must be done BUT…
…as Christians we must understand we have a higher responsibility
IF we truly believe what we say we believe about Jesus.
Otherwise why do what we do under the flag of “Jesus”?
So then we need to ask, “how do we know we are going to make a significant difference in kids lives?”
Because God tell us so in Deuteronomy 6, specifically in verse 18, that when we obey Him and do things His way (not ours), He will bless us.
The Lord himself promises us when we walk with our kids through life in such an intentional, long term manner they will grow to love Him with all their heart soul and might; they will fear his discipline when they go astray (knowing he does it out of His love for them), and by this they will grow to be productive adults.
God will bless their lives.
BUT this does not necessarily mean in a humanistic sense. It does not guarantee wealth or prominence; what God promises is peace with Him and that He will take care of them in a whole-istic sense.
As Paul Washer asks over and over in his sermon clip, how do we know we are saved? How do we know we believe?
Again I agree with Pastor Washer; we know when the Holy Spirit is continually convicting us to point the finger at ourselves…and not others. When we are continually facing our sin, showing our need for the Lord God Almighty and His son Jesus.
“When was the last time you wept over your sin?”
Through continual repentance, believing, and walking with God He will walk with us.
This is the heart of Deuteronomy 6.
This is the heart of the message, the bottom line, of what we must do with our kids.
And can this be done solely through an after school program, youth night, drop-in-center, or mass numbers outreach?
No! We all know that even Jesus concentrated on a small number of men, discipling them in an intentional, relational way that would ultimately turn this world upside down.
Why do we continue to think we can do more?
Kids need to see Jesus, through your life at school, home, the park, church, the grocery store, a concert, holidays, and the list goes on.
These other activities listed above are all well and good, but they are limited in their ability to effectively live out the command the Lord God Almighty gave us in Deuteronomy 6.
The bottom line: Walk with your kids through life in such an intentional, long term manner, they will see your sins, your frailties; and through your continual, daily falling to your knees in repentance and dependence on Jesus they will not only do the same, they will grow to become Christ-changed, hope-filled, productive adults!