Saturday, January 29, 2011

Strategy or Wisdom?

A friend invited me to the following event:
Join Josh McDowell February 3rd in Austin, TX for how we can pass on an authentic faith to the next generation. You will hear Josh share:
• The number one fear among parents and church leaders is that the culture will capture their kids.
• Why there is ample reason to fear we are losing our kids to the culture.
• Steps you can take now to impart an authentic faith--a biblical worldview--into your young people that will enable them to stand strong in the face of a godless culture.

Usually, I like Josh McDowell quite a lot but, a seminar to prepare us with strategy to impart an authentic faith? This really makes me ask the question, "Don't people think through this stuff themselves?" According to my pastor friend, I guess the answer is, “No.” In my mind, wisdom not strategy is the answer. The daily walk of not losing your kids to the culture may be multi-faceted but it’s not difficult:
  1. Don’t drop them off at the mall where they spend weekends immersed in the “culture.”
  2. Value reading extensively - powerful, thought provoking reading.
  3. Do outdoor activities where you spend actual time in conversation with your kids.
  4. Meals, prepared together, create space in the day for casual conversation, sharing thoughts, views of and responses to the “culture.”

I'll expand on each of these ideas in future posts. Not unexpectedly, I asked my three daughters (ages 16 to 23) their perceptions on the idea of “losing your kids to the culture” and they had answers very similar to mine. (It does rub off if you challenge your kids to think for themselves). So, my thoughts can be summarized with the following:

  1. Parenting is at least an 18 year commitment. You don’t toss them out for their friends to raise them when they are old enough to walk about.
  2. Primary peer influence results from absentee parents. This could be a gang or a clique depending economic status. Moral decline results when the teens are raising themselves and no one has the guts or discipline to discuss with them the pitfalls of bad decisions prior to their making big mistakes.
  3. Your number one priority should be to disciple your own kids. That means you walk in such a way that they think yours is a pretty good & godly life.

1 comment:

  1. I think it's challenging to not be afraid for your children. You love them and want the best for them, but you are right: God's Kingdom is not based on fear, it's based on love. Fear is the World's primary tool to keep people under the Law, to make them believe they need to be in control, and from knowing Christ.

    The most important question you can ask is: do your children have a relationship with Jesus Christ? Do they desire one? Are you helping to support and build up that relationship above all your other priorities in life? What really does matter more?

    And in the end, you have to trust God. God gave each of us the ability to choose, and that includes children. That is really challenging. So I think it's also important for others to be there for parents to support and encourage them and to just minister to them when things don't go as we would like.