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What the Bible Says About Parenting | Sunday Message (with guest speaker Adam Eaton)

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie
The Truth Network Radio
October 16, 2022 3:00 am

What the Bible Says About Parenting | Sunday Message (with guest speaker Adam Eaton)

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie

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October 16, 2022 3:00 am

If there’s one area of life where you’re sure to ask, “Am I Doing This Right?” it’s parenting! Every Christian parent desires to raise their kids in the ways of the Lord and have them experience an intimate relationship with Jesus. But let’s be honest: parenting is hard! 

In this episode, special guest Pastor Adam Eaton gives a message titled, “What the Bible Says About Parenting.” Parents and future parents will be encouraged and exhorted to follow what the Bible says about raising children.


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Pastor Rick Gaston

Hey there, thanks for listening to the Greg Laurie podcast, a ministry supported by harvest partners.

I'm Greg Laurie encouraging you if you want to find out more about harvest ministries. Learn more about how to become a harvest partner, just go to is a joy to be with all of you this morning looking to be in Deuteronomy chapter 6 of the other Bibles go ahead and open up to Deuteronomy chapter 6 and as you make your way there is harsh or quick story with you. My wife, I like Jonathan mentioned, we do have five children ages six and under.

We have six-year-old fog will forgo the two-year-old and one-year-old for boys to begin with, and that we are only little girl last year and got to say that it is crazy at our house is an understatement. It is constantly wild from the more from the moment they wake up and thought or two-year-old Eldon Cusick obsessed with Spider-Man. Every morning he walks out of his room and just like shoot you with his wedge Even though like that like the whole light stands accused down one hand on the ground want to end up like he does the superhero stent is great is awesome but it's crazy and we have one of the craziest seasons of our lights or old moments of our parenting last year because our third child Calvin. He was two years old. Sign up now to turn three and out we had just had our daughter Maeve and I think she was three weeks old at the time and I was actually not back at church for the first day working and in the afternoon I get a phone call from my wife. Frantic going.

Eldon works is because when he fell off the top bunk of the other bed and he sliced his head open. Unlike you know thinking the were sudden seen pictures yet. I'm imagining like a gash like just crazy right and she send me a picture and thankfully it's like a little cut about the size on his head was bleeding pretty good and so I rushed home and I got home as quickly as I could and we ended up taking to the urgent care and they made an apt stitching or stapler. They just glued it together and everything was all fine and good willing to create. Disaster averted, but man what a first day back to work right so five days later it's the day before Calvin's birthday is gonna turn three.

The next day and I would cite good vigilant because the last day we get them in for free so you gotta take advantage of those moments right so instead was going on his birthday with her the day before just to save $1000. So we wake up that morning I going to Calvin's Roman.

I wake him up and anybody were to celebrate your birthday today. She sums going on with the space of its targeted rings are pulled into our room light is on his whole side of his face just completely sworn delicate golf ball sized swollen spot on his head.

His eyeball is swollen shut. What had happened was the cut got infected and we didn't know about it until that morning and took a picture and I showed it to him he could come monster is but you know your heart is breaking for your child because you don't know what is going on. My life is like we go to the yard taken to the ER by the pump them full of antibiotics and the steroid. We spend the first half of the day I taking care of them and getting him all situated and by the afternoon. He seemed to be doing good and likely idiots that we are likely so go to Disneyland does not a good move. That was a bad bad move on our part, we have a two-year-old about to turn three hopped up on steroids and antibiotics and and we we park in the parking structure.

We start walking week is undertaking the treatment of the trends over time that we walk over we get to downtown Disney and Calvin throws the tantrum of all tantrums. I to this day have not seen a child act the way that that demon child did there was something going on there. We know just like what he went through his exhausted. He would had been through a lot that day and I just remember feeling so defeated.

At that moment.

I remember feeling just that complete helplessness going. I have no idea what to do. I don't know what to do next with this kid. I mean, what are we just packed up and we went back to the car and on the driver that the walk back. I'm just like, I don't know if I can keep doing this. This is this is so hard. This is so difficult. This is something that I am in and they don't give you manual for the stuff they just send the kids home with you, so keep them alive like great, but thankfully in God's word. We have some instruction in. And here is is the beauty of all of this on. I'm sure that every parent has been through a situation where you feel like you're just completely helpless and you're asking the question, am I doing this right in my mind my ruining my kids and my destroying their future. By the way that I am handling my job as a parent at the beauty and the hope of all of this, though, is in parenting even when you aren't doing it right. We have a Savior in heaven that is strengthening us keep on going. We have a Savior in heaven whose mercies are new every morning whose grace is sufficient for today whose power is made perfect in our weakness and who is interceding for us and will never leave us nor forsake us. That's what we have. That is the hope that we have, even in our lowest moments as followers of Jesus is all and encourage you this morning.

Parents as we look at what the Bible says about parenting. Can we just all for a moment, take a huge sigh of relief knowing that we are not doing this alone knowing that God is with us, knowing that he is here for us and was was crazy is that the odd thing about parenting is that it is the same time.

One of the most if not the most difficult thing you will ever do, but also one of the greatest sources of joy that you will ever experience this. Is this weird dichotomy that exists in parenting right I'll never forget holding each one of my children right after they were born in just a moment of like this child is mine, and it is a beautiful and an amazing thing right on me Mike, my children, they they make me tear up and cry on a regular basis like might my daughter like my come home from work, select she's walking now. It is only one and she's like probably around, but when I come home visit arms up down that you had to just like awesome and it's amazing my sons do it too, which is different when it's a little girl about like it's a special thing right and but it's like it. It's amazing how much joy and it's a reminder that children are a gift from the Lord right in Psalm 127 verses three through five.

It says children are a gift from the Lord. They are a reward from him.

Children born to a young man are like arrows in a warriors hands. How joyful is the man whose quiver is full of them. He will not be put to shame, we can when he confronts his accusers at the city gates allow this passage because again just by way of reminder, especially in this day and age when children more often are viewed as an inconvenience and a hindrance this is putting it very clearly. Children are a gift. Every child is a gift, it does not matter the circumstances by which they came into this world.

They are a gift from the Lord to be cherished to be nurtured to be cared for to be protected and that is the view that we need to have with every child from the moment they enter their mother's womb to the moment they are born, and then on I and I love how it also says that they are like an arrow right that they are an arrow in the warriors hands and not just a reminder that as parents we are to like to use our children if you will to bring good into this world to launch them into this world to do a good thing. And then in addition, it says at the end that when he goes to the gates that he will not be put to shame.

I love that because like it a lot with our children.

We have a lot of them and I'm just picturing like this guy rolling up to the city gates with his brood right with him and like you I was up for you to do right when he when he shows up. He's not gonna be put to shame. Like I love that it's such a beautiful picture and in a day and age when having a large family is weird like I love being weird. It's awesome. I would encourage all of y'all to be weird inside.

I think what's more weird is people who call themselves parliaments that he heard that before they have for babies that should be weird, I know in Orange County that happens a lot received, I do. I and Riverside have never seen a pic of people pushing a dog around in the stroller. I almost always see it in Orange County.

The guy I'm not no judgment a little bit of judgment but children are gifts from the Lord as you move forward on adjusters a couple of things on. First of all, I've only been here for six years. I do not have teenagers I've worked with teenagers and parents who have teenagers, but I'd never experience what it's like to have a teenager, so that the authority that I am standing on is not my own. It's not my accomplishments.

The jury is still out on how well my life I do as parents the authority that I'm sending on this morning is God's word. I'm standing on what God teaches in the principles that he sets forth in his word.

Second, this message applies to everyone obviously applies to parents and those who have children but also applies to those who want to have kids.

My encouragement to you this morning is to prepare now for the time when God will bring children into your life. This is also for those who are not ready to have kids, you're not married you're not even know close to God in error or maybe you are. You guys aren't aren't ready yet how kids I want to let you know there is a generation of young people that need voices other than their parents to tell them the truth of God's word right. We all need to be in this together right every parent in your life that you know the house children needs help our kids ministry. We talked about this last week. We need help.

And in that what you get to do is you get to be a light when you serve on Sundays and in other places, here at our church in the kids ministry or youth ministry that you get to be another voice in the life of a child pointing them to Jesus. This is also a message for everyone that maybe have is coming from the special circumstances right God's plan for marriage and family is a husband and wife are raising children together, but we also live in a broken world where that is not everyone's reality without is not everyone's past an hour or their current situation. So this is for broken families. This is for blended families. This is for single-parent households. This is for divorce households. This is for those who I've split custody situations. This is for grandparents that are raising their grandchildren as their own children right because what were going to talk about this morning is not what the Bible says about every specific situation because the Bible is not a manual in the sense that we can go to, you know, section 2.4.3 and look at what it says on how to how to raise kids when they are and you fill in the blank right is not like that with the Bible does instead is the Bible gives us principles and responsibilities that we are to walk in and so on job then, is to take those principles and those responsibilities and apply them to our current situation and so that's what were going to do this morning were opened up to Deuteronomy chapter 6 verses four through nine were to read together.

It says this, listen, O Israel, the Lord is our God, the Lord alone and you must love the Lord your God with all of your heart and all of your soul in all of your strength and you must commit yourselves wholeheartedly to these commands that I am giving you today.

Verse seven. Repeat them again and again to your children. Talk about them when you are at home and when you're on the road when you're going to bed and when you are getting up ties them to your hands and wear them on your four head as a reminder, write them on the door posts of your house and on your gates.

There were to break this passage down in just a moment, but the main point that I want to get to this morning and the thing that I hope we all walk away from today is that the primary is not the main responsibility of a parent is to help their children follow Jesus, but if if we distill everything that the Bible says about parenting, about raising children that I'd say that the clearest way that we can think about is that the primary job.

The parent is to help their children follow Jesus knows and there's a lot of important things.

There's a lot of things that we need to do as parents we need to provide for them. Absolutely yes we do write what we need to take care of them, especially when they're younger and there are hundred percent dependent on us that is vitally important but even in that our goal is not just to take care of them and keep them alive.

Our goal is to point them to their Savior.

It's a point them to the one who can care for their souls is also the primary response really is not to keep them happy is so easy to make happiness be a goal each day. It's like RK how can how can we just keep peace in the house. How can we just make them make everybody happy and and and make sure everything everyone is getting along. If that's your goal. If you fail all the time because you can't even keep kids happy Calvin. Are we just celebrated his fourth birthday right and that we took them to Chucky cheese. Yes, the place still exists, it is still as creepy as ever. I got the anima Tronic mouse. The just as weird right it's it's creepy. But our kids love it and and so we like. We went there we got them the wristband in an hour of unlimited play with all of the games we got them pizza. We got my wife made a cake like that look like Spider-Man because he loves Spider-Man and it just it was a great day it was tons of fine and we get in the car on our way back and what did you guys have fun and Calvin whose birthday that we were celebrating gauze. I didn't have fun. Like Calvin, wife because I didn't get to play the basketball game he got to play every game but for some reason we don't know why he didn't get to play the basketball game and that's wassup with them. Even last night. A month later we get in the car. Unprovoked he goes. You remember when we went to Chucky cheese and really yeah I didn't have fun, but you can't keep kids happy and that's your goal you to fail is not your primary responsibility. Your primary responsibility as a parent is to help them follow Jesus you have the honor and the privilege of being an instrument in the life of your child used by God to form their soul. That is the privilege that you have is apparent that is the joy that you get to experience that you are being used by God to form them into someone ideally would be one that follows after Jesus. This is the greatest mission of your life and I would argue that there is nothing more important in your life than to help your children follow Jesus. Your career is not important.

More important than that, your hobbies are not more important to not your vacations are not more important than that the single most important thing that you can do for your children is to take this responsibility seriously and to go after it with all that you are I would say this. I think one of the biggest lies that's being sold to young women today is that you can get just as much joy and satisfaction out of a career. As you can get from motherhood. I know that's an unpopular opinion. My wife and I were talking about this recently my wife when we got married. She was a full-time hairstylist loves her job. Loved what she got to do it was a creative outlet for her. She's an extrovert, so she's just it's like she's like I got trapped people in my chair I get to talk to them all day long. Right you love it right and when we started having children.

There can point were like okay like something's gotta give. Either we need to find day care or solution to help our take care of her children during the day or she would need to to stop working and stay home. So we often shoot through prayer and consideration and sacrifice. She is like night.

I need to stay home with our children and so she did and she ended up working just one day a week I meant crazy minutes and I don't say this not we talk about it recently and she was like I I don't look back and not on that decision. Regret it one bit. There is nothing that I would change about that decision because she's like there is more joy, more satisfaction that I have been able to experience being there for my children fulfilling the role that God has placed me in in their lives than anything I could've gotten from a career. Now my saying that you can't do both know I'm not. I'm not saying that it's evil or that it's wrong but I am saying this.

Don't believe the lie, but you'll get just as much joy and satisfaction out of out of a career as I believe that is a lie. I believe them. Motherhood. Parenthood should be embraced with all of its craziness with all of its hardship but also with all of its joy and all of the satisfaction that it can bring into one's life so our job is to help our children follow Jesus where does not begin point number one if you're taking notes this morning. Being a godly parent starts with being an authentic follower of Jesus being a godly parent begins with being an authentic follower of Jesus. We must start here because if our primary responsibility is help our children follow Jesus. Then we as parents need to also follow Jesus and you would be shocked at how many parents during my years in youth ministry would bring their kids to youth ministry and basically say hey can you fix them. And the question would always have the come back to look. It was a little bit of math here is 168 hours in a week if you bring them to church work.

We get them for one hour what's happening the other hundred and 67 because that's where the real work needs to be done yeah is the Holy Spirit powerful and good is God's word able to change people's lives in an hour a week 100%. We absolutely believe that. But I also know that a lot of work that gets done on Sunday can be undone by parents that don't walk the way that they should. During the apparent someone encourage you if you want your children to follow Jesus you must follow Jesus and so I will dock at Deuteronomy chapter 6 at the beginning. What is it say it says in verse five it says you must love the Lord your God with all of your heart with all your soul and with all of your strength being in authentic follower of Jesus means that we love God with everything that we are with every part of us is nothing that we are holding back.

There's nothing that we are leaving out. We are giving all of ourselves over to Jesus. Jesus quotes this passage quotes Deuteronomy chapter 6 in Matthew chapter 22 when a lawyer comes in and says hey what's the most important of all of the commandments of Jesus, as this is the most important commandment that you love God with everything that you are this is what it means to be an authentic follower of Jesus to be a disciple of Jesus parents.

I want to say that the most important thing that you have to pass on to your children is not an inheritance. It's it's not a career it's not a job it's not a business. The most important thing that you have to offer your children and leave with them is your relationship with Jesus Christ. That's it. There's nothing more important than that, and not should be the most important focus of our job as a parent is that we are connecting with him.

In addition, being a follower of Jesus means that you love Jesus more than you love anyone or anything else in Matthew chapter 10 verse 37 Jesus said if you love your father or mother more than you love me you are not worthy of being mine or if you love your son or your daughter more than you love me you are not worthy of being mine in this passage Jesus is drawing a line he say hey listen here is, here's the deal. You need to love me more than you love anything else more than you love anyone else more than you love your spouse more than you love your career, and even more than you love your children, which I gotta say is really hard because we have children there is a built-in thing that happens are holding out your firstborn for the first time thinking.

I love this child so much. I would give my life for this child in a heartbeat. This truck and do nothing for me but I would give my life for this child because I love him and it's hard because that that's built-in but it's choosing to love Jesus more than we even love our own children, and what can happen is that when you love your children more than you love the Lord, they become an idol in your life and they take a place that only God is meant to hold in your life and then your putting a burden on them that only God can carry so we need to keep our eyes on Jesus and love him more than anyone else and keep our priorities straight. In addition, being a follower of Jesus means that you obey his word in Deuteronomy 6 verse six he says, and you must commit yourselves wholeheartedly to these commands that I'm giving you a thing like there is a commitment. Now this isn't just about love. This isn't just not choosing to love someone. Now this is about the way that you live. This is now about how we organize our lives and set up our lives to follow him. In John chapter 14 verse 15 Jesus, but even more clearly. He says if you love me obey my commandments.

It doesn't get more simple than that. If you want to follow me in authentic follower of Jesus. These are the things that that we must do in your own want you to know that your kids are watching how you live.

They see everything my kids. One of the things we do like we we've been really strict on them without like seatbelts right in the car as we should, as every parent should write to good things we may have scared them a little too much with some fake phone calls to my dad but we call them officer Eaton and we have some children that are not wearing their seatbelts on others.

A guy might be in am I doing that right. I don't know but now they know how to see both on lower driving is to stop the guard my seagulls on so that's good. But now, when we know where our seatbelt. Everything else about the like were to call the cops on your jail still give watch how we live in a bar.

Words don't match our actions were setting our children up for failure Sunday only. Christianity does not work well for children being told how to live one way, one day a week but then setting an example set for them. The rest of the week that doesn't match anything else that they're being told does not work for children. It hurts them as why things got even says in an revelation like Katie are neither hot nor cold or lukewarm and spit you out of my nothing like choose one side or the other just be clear, don't play both sides and in the same way for the sake of our children, the better, and best thing to do is to live for Jesus. So it starts with you again the number one responsibility of the parent is to help their children follow Jesus second point this morning is that you need to teach your children about Jesus. One of the roles that you play as a parent is a teacher and a coach.

Your job is to teach them about who Jesus is.

In Deuteronomy chapter 6 verse seven it says repeat them again and again to your children. Talk about them when you are at home and when you are on the road talk about them when you are going to bed and when you get up. There parents are called to pass on what God has given to them to their children.

I want the best things that we can do is to teach our children what we have learned from God and how do we do not get the gives us four different areas for different places, though, that we should do that he says first when you're at home.

Repeat these things to your children when you are at home. I would encourage you this start was at the dinner table Oscar question is is is Jesus welcome in your home. It is talking about Jesus and talking about God's word and talking about the Bible is not a normal thing in your household and I pray that it is but I also know that for some it isn't. I would say here's a good place for you to start start of the dinner table you don't have a good habit of eating together for a meal. Start by doing it on your daily or at least a start with a once a week meal with your family. We are sitting around together intentionally talk about Jesus start in your home.

Says also.

Home and when you're on the road. We do a lot of driving these days, especially here in Orange County. If you like you to get on the freeway to go anywhere around here right.

Those are all moments that you can use to be Jesus conversations between you and your children.

It's easy to turn music on its easy to you now turn our thing, monitoring a movie on in the backseat right in and let them watch their thing while you listen to your thing man. What an amazing thing. If you turn your car into a holy place where you talk with your children about Jesus when you're on the road go about and talk and here's what's amazing your kids are in kids ministry. Today they're going to be sent home with a sheet of paper.

This can have a list of questions become small, and in the corner, but you can find them instead of a list of questions that you'll be able to ask your children about what they learned today start that right now. Start on your drive home. You can talk with your kids about what they are learning about the Lord. He also says in this when you're going to bed doing nightly routine with your children where you are praying with them and encouraging them and reading God's word to them or over them make this a nightly habit and that it also says and when you get up do this at breakfast before you all go your separate ways, in a moment where you connect with your family and and you talk about the Lord. Here's the big idea that this is getting out when are we supposed to talk about the Lord always all the time. Every moment everywhere. Fathers do you hear me dads in the room. Do you hear me your job for your children is to talk with them about the things of the Lord all the time. Every moment, and everywhere I am picking on you for a moment, because I think men get a bad rap that we you know, just let the moms do this kind of stuff that should not be that way man you must take charge and and and take up that mantle of responsibility to read your families spiritually, even your children don't let that be something that your wife is just praying that you'll do. Someday start doing that today grandfathers to hear me. Your children and your grandchildren need to hear about Jesus from you. I love it when my kids hear about Jesus from from my dad. I love it when my wife's parents spend time with our kids teaching them about our history and where where we come from. Those are connections that are necessary and needed in the life of every child. So again we need to take these things seriously and talk about Jesus everywhere all the time. Wherever we go and then we need to saturate our life it with God's word.

We need to make Jesus welcome in our homes and then in Proverbs chapter 22 verse six it says direct your children onto the right path, and when they are older, they will not leave it only say this about this passage really quick. This passage is a principal not necessarily a promise right.

Proverbs RRR wisdom literature.

It's looking at the world around us and and using the wisdom. Wisdom from above to discern the way that we ought to live in basically saying like, hey, listen, there's this is what we see in this is how it plays out most of the time when you raise your children in the ways of the Lord when they are older, they will not depart from it was interesting is that there's a survey that was done recently and they found that 63% of Christians today, became a Christian between the ages of four and 14 in the next age group 34% became Christians between the ages of 15 and 30 and this is the most staggering number to me.

97% of all Christians surveyed became a Christian before age 30.

What that tells us is that earlier you teach your children the things of the Lord, the more likely they are to walk and not in the later years of their life. There is a window of opportunity that you have with your children to teach them the ways of the Lord to show them who Jesus is to be an example to them of what it looks like to be an authentic of follower of Jesus does not mean that it will 100% of the time result in your children always following Jesus. No, it's not a guarantee but you have a far better likelihood of the earlier you start with your children, teaching them the ways of the Lord.

I can't stress enough to your parents how important it is that we teach our kids about Jesus, but DL Moody got great preacher.

He said once. If I could relive my life, I would devote my entire ministry to reaching children for God amazing statement that is that he sees that there there there is truth to this, this statement that if we teach our children the ways of the Lord when they are older, they will not depart from it. We need to teach them how to think we need to teach them how to process the world around them. We need to give them a biblical worldview. This means that were not making all of the decisions for them for their entire life. This means that that we are teaching them not just what the Bible teaches, but were also teaching them how to think about what the Bible teaches that in the earlier stages of a child's life. What you're doing is you are protecting them from all of the things of the world right because Disney plus is not safe. Netflix is not safe YouTube kids is not safe. Every one of those places has a worldview that they are promoting that they are pushing on our children and what we need to do is we need to. In a lot of ways protect them, but as they mature and get older we also need to teach them how to think instead of making all the decisions for them. So this is what it means. And this is what looks like to teach our children about Jesus and then our third point. Not only do we need to teach our children about Jesus, but we need to discipline our children towards following Jesus.

I say this is probably one of the most difficult parts of parenting because if you get discipline wrong.

It can be disastrous if you go overboard you ruin your relationship with your child. If you go to soft you end up you know with a spoiled child child. And what's with the phrase it's if you raise your kid, you get to spoil your grandchildren. But if you spoil your kids you want to raise your grandchildren right. Some is like oh my gosh, that all makes sense. So we need to do discipline our children towards following Jesus. Ephesians chapter 6 verse four says fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, by the way that you treat them rather bring them up with the discipline and instruction that comes from the Lord. I appreciate First part don't provoke your children to wrath, because I know how to make my kids angry and actually pretty good at it and I kind of enjoy it touches like the sinner in me that just as I get know it's it's a little bit fun because like my favorite thing to do to my kids is when they say I'm hungry all they Ojai hungry nice to meet you and I've done it so much that knowledge is really hungry by God's there.

The reaction at this point and is like, but I still do it because I shouldn't and it's fun but what we need to do is raise them up. Mrs. in the discipline and instruction that comes from the Lord. Why do discipline. We discipline our children. Ultimately, because we love them. In fact, the Bible says if you don't discipline your children you don't love your children. There's a really interesting correlation there right letting a three-year-old run. The house is not a loving thing to do because a three-year-old, often most of the time doesn't even know what they want. Don't demand something for dinner. You'll make it for them. You put it in front of them in the I didn't want that your psycho disputes. That's exactly what you said you wanted but what we need to do is discipline our children because we love them in Hebrews chapter 12 verses 5 to 6.

This is my child don't make light. The Lord's discipline and don't give up when he corrects you for the Lord disciplines those he loves, and he punishes each one he accepts as his child discipline from the Lord proves that we belong to him. It's the way one of the ways that he shows his love to us. It is one of the ways that we must show our love to our children.

We set limits. We set boundaries reset lines that they are not to cross and if they do we need to discipline them accordingly.

In our household.

We discipline for three reasons. We discipline for dishonesty. We discipline for disobedience and we discipline for disrespect are those of the three B's of discipline in our household dishonesty disrespect and what was awesome. My brain just went. Thank you disobedience. Thank you.

I normally have that down so here's the thing when those things happen, we need to show them love by disciplining them.

We use discipline to point them towards Jesus because here's the deal. Kids make mistakes teenagers make mistakes they are sinners like you and I they have a wicked and selfish heart that once what it shouldn't want bevel wicked and selfish heart, but rejects the things that it should want right in our job as a parent is to help guide and shape their hearts and their soul and those mistakes need to be corrected, but they don't just need behavior modification. Our goal is not just to change the behavior and discipline and discipline. Our goal is to change the heart and for doing that out of anger were not nobody's heart was ever changed because of anger by nobody's heart was ever changed by being yelled out or screamed at her or used by using harsh language with them. See discipline is not about behavior modification because your children don't have a behavior problem. Your children have a worship problem. Why do your children act out because they are worshiping something that they should not be worshiping everybody is a worshiper ready for that. The apostle Paul talks about this in gets in the book of Romans that we we've exchanged the truth of God for the life that we are now worshiping the creature rather than the Creator righties is making the point that everybody worships all the time pastor Greg mentioned this a few weeks ago that worship is not just the style of music. It's a posture of the heart right in and what children do is they end up idolizing things and worshiping things and sacrificing things are for things that they shouldn't and so your three-year-old Megan angry at you that it lash out at you because you didn't make them what they wanted for dinner is not because your children read a diet book and they now all the sudden light on you to get a gluten-free diet and I'm sick of chicken nuggets and frozen pizza right anybody else, okay cool right so nominal it's a control thing there worshiping the idol of control and they want to control their own lives and that's why they're lashing out at your 10-year-old when you told me to stop playing video games isn't lashing out at you because you know because they they hate you. They're lashing out at you because you are now a roadblock of worshiping and serving their God of videogame by this is the way we need to begin thinking about the behavior of archers because again when you're 17-year-old starts cussing at you or throwing a tantrum like a two-year-old at you because you're not letting them hang out with the friends that they wanted to hang out with. That's not you that they're mad at. They're mad at what you represent and you represent the authority of God in their lives because God has given you authority over their lives is not given you independent authority he's given you authority as an ambassador you are an ambassador for the authority of God in the way that you teach your children about authority is going to affect the rest of their life is going to affect the rest of how they treat any authority that comes into their life and I say this because I want you to know parents it's not personal, as personal as it feels when your kids yell I hate you from the other room. I happen to me yesterday that my five-year-old yelled because I disciplined him because he got in trouble for doing something he shouldn't have done yelled. I hate you I hurts but is not personal because without represents is not represents him lashing out at something that is attacking the idol that's in his life and parent you need to be in the business of destroying idle you need to be on the side that God is on and pointing your children towards the one that can change and bring good into all of it. You represent God's authority to them. But here's the thing, even in our discipline we need to represent God well here's what I mean by that. How does God win people to himself.

What is Romans tells us, is it not the kindness of God leads men to repentance is not the goodness of God leads men to repentance and it's easy to get angry and upset and discipline in those heated moments and to say things that you should never say to your children, how much better is it to with self-control through the power of this the Holy Spirit through an understanding of what God is doing in us in the light or through us in the lives of our children to say hey that's not really hurts but here's a consequence for that but I want you to know that I'm always in a love you got even though you said you hate me. I always love you that's never going to change. There's nothing that you can do to change my love for you. You get to represent the heart of God to your children, even in the midst of discipline and that's going to come in the in the form of conversations that you have to have a thousand times with your children, my son Braxton. He is his art.

He sees like built a stocky strong like any accidentally hurts his brothers all the time right accidentally enhance its own that we have this conversation every day. Braxton you know you're strong right yeah why did God give you strength to help people and protect people sort of been teaching them as a great all right will you can use your strength for to help people and protect people okay. Great. Awesome. An hour later he hurts his brother.

Okay Braxton you're strong why did God give you strength for guidance on this conversation a thousand times because what you in discipline have to do is you have to connect the behavior to the worship you want to connect what they're doing to the fact that they're doing things that are destructive for their hearts, and for their soul. And yeah, it's hard to do that, make that connection when their super young but you have to start.if you do it now because it will help you think about your life and the things that you are worshiping that you should not be worshiping. This is a beautiful thing that the Lord has invited all of us to.

We don't discipline and we don't get upset and we don't do things with our children moved to Masada because I said so situation it's because it's what's right and what's best for you and as you), which is closer to two quick points number one we are in this together. Parenthood can be so lonely because honestly it can be really toxic parenthood circles right. I don't think there's anyplace more toxic than the comment section of a parenting post on Facebook, especially some of the moms. Some of the moms are like flu but you get what do your children is not good. We need each other. We need to build one another up. Listen we need the church as well, but I want to encourage parents get your kids plugged into church as much as possible. Get them here on Wednesday nights in Orange County and Thursday nights in Riverside for youth night get them plugged in in the kids ministry get them it's saturated in in communities where there are believers that they can make friends with and be friends with.

Because we need it be in community with other parents be people that you can talk to about what you are going through.

As a parent we need each other in this and then lastly, I want you to know that you are not alone.

You have a God in heaven who is there for you. I love the last part of the great commission in Matthew chapter 28 verses 19 and 20. At the very and Jesus says this he says I with you always, even to the end of the age that applies to every believer, but I all that also applies to every parent, God is with you. He knows your struggle.

He knows what you're going through. He knows the battles that you are fighting. He knows the things that that you are are facing.

I know how crazy it is to be apparent in this day and age, and God knows it too, and he is there with you and it's not too late. You are not too late. Maybe your you're here and you're gone man on Mike Mike. My kids are all adults and they're not following Jesus was and is not too late for you to take up that mantle of following Jesus and taking that responsibility. Even with your adult children to help them follow Jesus is not too late for your teenagers is not too late for your elementary school kids is not too late for anybody if you today decide I'm gonna follow Jesus and I want to take this responsibility to help my kids follow Jesus and I would say this, it's time for us to do some for every parent to stand up and say I want my kids to follow Jesus is more important than their academic career is more important than theirs. It's more important than the job that they're going to choose or the person there that they're gonna marry. This is the most important, have the privilege of helping your children with men: pray for you but pray together or become before you right now. We thank you for your word, your grace in your mercy Lord I pray for every parent in this room, God would you strengthen them, strengthen them, and the fact that even when they're not doing it right you are with us, you'll never gonna turn your back on us in the same way that I'm sure every parent in this room, which I'm never gonna turn my back on my kids. You will never turn your back on us in God, we thank you for the we thank you that you give us guidance in your word that you give us responsibilities that we are to fill, and principles that we can live out with our children with our families. Lord I pray that you help us to walk in those in the name of Jesus I pray that a man God bless you all here everybody thinks you're listening to this podcast to learn more about harvest ministries follow the show and consider supporting it. Just go to a and find out how to know God personally go to and click on know God

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