Wednesday, September 10, 2008

The purpose of parenting

I heard a quote recently that I thought I'd share with you. It was made in the context of talking about parenting and making the church a priority in your family's life. The quote was this: "Parenting is ultimately preparing your child for the day of judgment."

For some reason that just rang very true in my mind. Sometimes I would imagine that it is tempting as parents to see the purpose of parenting your child as something other than that. It's tempting to see the goal of parenting as: making them "well-rounded," ensuring a good education, involving them in plenty of good activities, etc. And when we settle for those goals, then our family priorities fall in line with them. If being "well-rounded" is the goal, then things like sports and music take priority over the local church. If the goal is ensuring a good education for them, then academic work will take precedence over and above local church involvement.

It's only when we realize that the ultimate responsibility of parenting is doing our best to prepare our child for their inevitable day of judgment that their spiritual development takes its rightful place at the top of our priorities. God has given us the local church as a place to learn, to grow, to be challenged, to be under the loving authority of pastors, and to serve. Local church involvement is not an optional activity or a hindrance to your "family time." It is essential to the spiritual development of your child.

Yes, YOU are the primary discipler of your child; BUT, the church is also a God-given means of educating and training your children in godliness. Don't let coaches and instructors from other activities take the place in your children's lives that should be occupied by loving members of their church, who want to help you as you "prepare your child for the day of judgment."

Here's a link to the audio file where I heard this quote...It'd be worth listening to:
Click here to listen.

Hebrews 10:24-25 (ESV)
"And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near."

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