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Who We Are & What We’re For: Parenting (Ephesians 6:1-4)

Nov 28, 2021
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Parenting (Ephesians 6:1-4)
Many children and parents ask the question, “Is (this) normal?” as it relates to some family dynamic. The answer is yes and no. Yes, the challenges your family is facing are the same as others, but no; we live in a broken world where the pain and heartache is not a part of God’s perfect design. Thankfully, Jesus is the hope for that brokenness.
Ephesians 6:1-4 speaks to the family. It begins by continuing the theme of submission and obedience. “Children obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right.” It is important for children to walk in obedience to someone or something. If children are in a place of submission under their parents, it is a place of good security and a part of God’s provision for those children. it is also a part of the bigger plan for each of us to learn to submit to our Good Father.
It is important for parents to let their kids learn authority as they are under the leadership of others (teachers, coaches, etc.) The culture says that obedience should push back against freedom and autonomy, but God’s plan is that obedience brings provision and peace. Too often, we:
  1. Forget our sin – we live in brokenness in the home.
  2. Miss the point of redemption – parents should not “expect” a season of rebellion.
Verse 2 begins with “Honor your father and mother…” This is a directive of worship to God as it references one of the commandments. It speaks to the natural order of hierarchy and it speaks to the Lord being at work in your home. Verse 4 goes on to speak to Fathers not provoking their children to anger:
  1. Don’t compare them to others
  2. Don’t withdraw your love
  3. Be consistent
  4. Speak life over your kids as your words carry a tremendous weight.
Bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord:
  1. This is more than meeting a temporary need.
  2. The Lord has given you great resources
  3. God chose you to parent your children and on one has the voice into your kid’s lives that you do!
  4. The church IS a family
The word “discipline” in verse 4 is the same as that of Hebrews 12. It is for our children’s benefit. It is NOT an outward conformity, but a heart transformation.
Parents, your identity is in Christ:
  1. Your kids are not your identity
  2. You must lead them out of the overflow of your own walk with Jesus.
  3. Your kids do not need perfection, but they do need a example of a grace-filled life.
E – engage the church as a family – you have resources and help! (Milestone path)
T – tell your story and faith journey – make sure your children can tell YOUR story too.
C – choose moments to engage their faith – set aside time for faith connection.
H – hold each other up daily in prayer – pray out loud over your kids.
Discussion Questions:
  1. Without the gospel, we will default to the way we were raised or allow the culture to form our parenting. How were you raised, and is it consistent with the gospel? What do you need to be cautious of as you parent?
  2. Our kids need authenticity and grace, not perfection. Why do we, as parents, focus too often on perfection?
  3. “Have you raised your kids in church, or have you raised your kids in Christ?” Why would you say that?
  4. When is a time that you can remember that you made a parenting decision out of the overflow of your walk with the Lord?
  5. Why is obedience so hard for kids? for adults?
  6. How would your family answer this question, “Our family is identified by ___________”. (See Deut 6:4-9.)
  7. Talk about a time that you were disciplined. Why was that good for you? How was it hard?