I Want My Children to Make Their Own Decisions

I Want My Children to Make Their Own Decisions

But do we?

Recently two pastors were having a conversation. One remarked how the excuse of a bad experience in church, among Christians, left them determined to allow their children to make their own decision when it comes to all things religious. The other responded that deciding such a move predicated on poor decisions and behaviors of others does not really hold. For instance, he went on, consider that the history of the United States is full of bad actors. We do not then tell our children it will be up to them if they want to be American. Instead, we teach them better history, we point out those who stood against the baser forms of the powers in the Republic, and we encourage them to choose to be the best of neighbors. Why wouldn’t we apply the same pattern when confronted with the inevitable experience of those in church who sometimes do not carry on the faithfulness of Jesus at every turn?

When we invite families and children to Bible Study at Snow Hill, we do so with the full confidence that every child will one day be faced with the decision as to whom will they give their primary allegiance. Consider allegiance another way to talk about worship – the act of giving something what it is due.

In a world where it is clear that the powers of Sin and Death hold sway, illustrated in the evil that we witness, why wouldn’t we point to a Lord that is more interested in setting people free that making them all the more captive?

We have been in Romans for a few weeks. One of the ways Paul may make this point to us as Christian parents is found in the way he talks about the power of Sin. Remember, for Paul after about chapter 4, the word sin takes on the sense of something more than what we do. Instead he raises the level of the word to the status of power and so the reason for the capital “S” in Sin. The pervasive nature of the power of Sin is referred to by Paul in language of kingdom or lordship. In other words, Sin is lord.

Don’t miss this. The way Paul’s argument works is that his declaration is Jesus is Lord means that Sin is not. We don’t easily see the wordplay in our English translations. But, for those in Paul’s day the news would be both good and startling.

What does this mean as parents? Why would we not teach our children that the power that keeps everyone captive, is lord over us all, has been defeated in Jesus work on the Cross? If we remind them that Jesus said everyone will choose a lord, he is offering to be the sort that presents us with an easy yoke that leads to life and lifts the burden of guilt and shame that stem from the decisions we make that work against our own good and the good of others – the sins we do.

What are we suggesting?

If you and I want the best for our children, why not point them to the Lord Jesus Christ rather than let them suffer the weight that comes with the power of Sin that will surely burden them with more than you or I would want them to experience?

We work tirelessly to help them avoid painful experiences, as much as we may help it. Why would we not include pointing them to Jesus?

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Jesus invites people into his life and his way. He takes what is and points to the new way of the Kingdom of God.  Come see what this journey is all about!

One way to think about the mission of Jesus - He calls into question the way things are and points to the way things may be in the Kingdom of God. 

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Oklahoma
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