Previous Challenge Entry
Topic: Discipleship (02/23/04)
TITLE: The Most Intense and Longest Lasting Discipleship Course EVER!
By Donna Haug
LEAVE COMMENT ON ARTICLE
SEND A PRIVATE COMMENT
SEND ARTICLE TO A FRIEND
“Mom, why didn’t God just destroy Satan when he sinned instead of letting him go and mess things up?”
Have you ever heard questions like these? If your children are anything like mine, they make you wish you were a bit of a theologian sometimes. My children have been hearing Bible stories, singing songs about Jesus and attending church very regularly since they were ‘knee high to a grasshopper’. We have had opportunities to talk to them about interesting things like ‘why did God bother to make wild flowers when no one is there to see them?’ or ‘why did God make weeds?’ There are times that I am so pleased with our efforts as parents to seize the moment and teach our children something about our Lord that I feel the need for a pat on the back.
But then again there are those other days – the days when things don’t exactly go as planned. We lose our cool or say something we later regret. Unfortunately those are also times when we are teaching our children lessons – lessons about what God the Father is like, or about how it’s all right to live our lives – lessons that are definitely NOT what we had planned.
I know I’ll never be a perfect parent, but I do realize the importance of my role. I am in the middle of the most intense discipleship program known to man. Twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week, 52 weeks a year for at least 18 PLUS years I am being watched and my children are learning! They learn from my words but also from my actions. I am saying, “Follow me as I follow Christ.” If this is so, then it is of utmost importance that I do “follow Christ”!
So what do I do if I mess up? If I freak out at my child unfairly because I misunderstood or because I am just too tired to be fair, what should my response be? Should I try to justify myself before my child, or should I be vulnerable enough to admit that I was wrong and say I’m sorry? I know that my children are fully aware of whether or not they have been treated justly. One look on their faces will tell the story. Parents would not loose face if they were to admit their mistake and ask forgiveness but rather they would teach the child some valuable lessons. They would learn that we all make mistakes and that it is necessary to do something to right those wrongs whenever possible. They would see humility lived out in love.
Parents, you have embarked on the most intense and longest lasting discipleship course ever! Trust in the Lord to lead you and give you wisdom for each day. When you mess up, fess up! Be honest before your children and your Lord. Discipleship not an easy task, but in the end it will be the most rewarding job you will ever have undertaken. Do it with excellence!