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Leaving a Legacy that Lasts Forever - Teach Them to Work Unto the Lord, Part 2

Living on the Edge / Chip Ingram
The Truth Network Radio
May 25, 2023 6:00 am

Leaving a Legacy that Lasts Forever - Teach Them to Work Unto the Lord, Part 2

Living on the Edge / Chip Ingram

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May 25, 2023 6:00 am

Chip wraps up this message by explaining how to teach children to work "unto the Lord." He challenges parents not to rob their children of the opportunities to grow, by constantly "doing" for them. The practicalities of being on time, starting with small chores and as they mature, gradually adding more and more responsibilities, and actually finishing a job, are all key to preparing them for being on their own.


Are you in one of those can-do jobs? What I mean is you can do it, but down deep you don't really like it.

In fact, you might even despise it. Well, do you quit? Do you buck for a promotion? Do you go back to school? Could it be that you have yet to discover the job that God has specifically made you to do?

Stay with me and let's find out. Living on the Edge is an international discipleship ministry focused on helping Christians live like Christians. And the word work has become so negative today. Like, that's going to be a lot of work.

All this work is stressing me out. So how do we change that? As Chip continues our series, Leaving a Legacy That Lasts Forever, he points out what the Bible says about work and how we should approach our jobs day in and day out. Now be sure to listen in after this message as Chip talks more about that and highlights a valuable tool that will help you. Okay, here now is Chip for the second half of his talk, Teach Them to Work Unto the Lord. He begins by continuing to share ways to help our kids practice this idea. Second, feed them responsibility, responsibility, responsibility.

Maturity has very little to do with age and everything to do with responsibility. I can show you 35 year old guys living in the back bedroom paying $33 a month rent asking mommy what's for supper. And I can show you 17, 18 year olds or a couple guys at 23, 24 that were Stanford said, you want to try starting this little company? I don't know.

You think this Google thing will work? I don't know. So they're 29 and billionaires. Maturity is not about how old you are.

Maturity is the ability to handle more and more responsibility. And so you give your kids or your disciples, that's why even when you do small groups and when you do Bible studies, don't fix everything. Don't take care of everything. Ask people to bring stuff. Ask people to start leading. Ask people to share something. All the time feed those people you love the most responsibility, responsibility, responsibility.

By the way, they won't do it as well as you. So perfectionistic fellow saints in the kingdom, lighten up. Be able to live with some messes because can I go back to like how did you learn to do stuff? That bricklayer, you know the greatest gift he gave to me? You know I came to Christ and then you know I went mostly to school to play basketball and baseball but I did get an education. And I think God put me with that bricklayer and we saw this ministry grow and then I graduated from school and before I could find a coaching job, I worked with him and then I was there like three months. We're going to launch this new ministry. And he started working with some couples. He went a year earlier than me and I'll never forget the day I came up to his house because we'd have a little Bible study Saturday morning and he goes, Chip, you know something? I'm getting too old for this student stuff.

And I'm going to just focus on couples. The whole campus ministry, I mean we had like five people. The whole campus ministry is yours. So what do you mean? He said it's yours. What's that mean?

It's yours. Lead it, direct it, come up with a strategy, make it happen. I said, Dave, I moved here to learn all this stuff. I mean I had a good teaching job and I came to learn from you and do all this stuff and I'm living in this tiny little apartment with the box and the campus is up there and we do it and you're living.

What do you mean? He said, look, just lead it. And I said, well I don't know enough. He goes, well there's my file cabinet. Everything I've learned, all the messages I've learned from other people, they're topical.

You can just open them up and get whatever you need. And I remember, because his house was up on this hill and mine was down at the bottom, and I remember trudging down. I said, man, I can't believe this. I can't believe this. I can't believe this. I can't believe this.

Man, are you kidding? He just dumped this whole thing on me and by the time I got to the door it was like, alright. I'm going to lead it.

I'm going to do it my way then. So I started these Gospel of John Bible studies in dorm rooms and guys are smoking dope and there's all these pictures on the wall and it's crazy and I'm getting in the Bible and all of a sudden they start coming to Christ and here's what he understood. He could have me help him for yet another season and I would be a little helper. Or he could dump the truck of responsibility on me and I'd have to figure it out. You know how I learned how to lead? Leading. And you know how you learn how to lead when you don't know how to lead?

It's called overwhelming. And then guess what? I prayed a lot because I didn't know what I was doing. Now I'm sure he kind of was watching and he was not going to let me go over a cliff.

But he let me get right to the edge. That's what you want to do. Feed them responsibility. Give them jobs. Feed them responsibility. Number three, require, I almost said demand because I really mean demand. Demand excellence and develop a work ethic. We have just got into this our little kids psyche.

We don't want them to feel bad. My kids will tell you and maybe I was a little over the top. I had one son that had a struggle in school and he had the gift of sloppiness. And so he would do his homework and I couldn't even read it and it was half baked and so every night, I mean for like almost two years, every night. I'm not exaggerating so maybe I missed a night. You know, sort of.

Not many. And I would look at it and I said well Eric I can't read this. He said well Dad it's the best I can do. I said well the best you can do I guess is not quite good enough because that's, and I would give him the little Dad sermon and I really love you son and I'll do it again.

I'll do it again. I'm in the fourth grade. I'm not as good as I can write. I'm not a very good writer. Hey Eric, got that news. You can cry as long as you want but when you start writing it again, it'll get quicker. Okay.

So I'll be out here when you get it done. Bring it out to me. And that's how you learn to clean out the garage.

That's not bad. Now try it again. You know, the reason the vacuum cleaner, you pick up the rug and you actually vacuum under the rug okay. Now I'm not talking about being perfectionistic, over the top wacko. Although my kids at times would say I had small moments of that. It was if they don't learn to work well and work with excellence and work to an audience of one, where do you think they're going to pick that up? One of the greatest gifts I think I saw my wife and I give our children is they know how to think and they know how to work. And they've all been very successful in jobs because right now, how many of you are like either a business owner, supervisor, employer, manager in any way? What's your number one problem? You can't find people who can work right?

You can't find people that can come on time, do what they're told, fulfill a job and do it well. You give that to those you love and they'll be successful in whatever they do. And so you have to demand that.

By the way, the reason for those of you that still have some small kids or by the way it gets harder when they're older. Well I'm 18 years old, I can do anything I want. That's right.

You can also pay your own rent, you can buy your own food. Give them responsibility. Your goal is not to make them dependent and like you and have warm fuzzy feelings all the time. You want to launch them. They're an arrow of God out of your quiver and you want to launch them into the world with a trajectory of impact. So you need to understand, I'm called to do this, God made me to do this, I do it for an audience of one. You know what, I can lay brick or be a nuclear physicist.

And you know what, they're equal in God's eyes. I just need to figure out what that is. And the final thing I would say is teach them, and I allude to this, to work for an audience of one. And when they're young, like I told them, I understand no one can see behind here that's really dirty and all the cobwebs and you know the spiders that are coming out of the corner and stuff. It's upsetting your mother. But the reason you clean here is because we're not doing this for me or for your mom. You do your best because this is your work as an offering to God.

Did you see it? This was really one of the core reformation principles. The priesthood of the believer was one. This other was living life before the face of God. All that we do, all that we are is an offering. And so those are four little things. Jobs, responsibility, excellence, audience of one. Now let's get real practical.

Help them discover God's calling for their life and to do this you need to ask the following questions. And by the way, this isn't original. What is your shape? Actually there was a pastor I think from Saddleback who wrote a book that has this word shape, but it was such a good acronym I stole it. And so I don't want any credit for it, but I think all truth is God's truth.

If you give credit, if people have done better stuff than you, you just grab it, modify it, give credit and use it. So this acronym of a shape I think is very, very helpful. And here's your role with your disciples, with the people that you love, with your kids, with your grandkids, with the people in your Bible study.

You want to be a student of them. See your role, you've got 365 days to live. If you're going to die 365 days from now and at the end of that 365 days, let's say they live another 20 or 30 years.

Let's just round it. 70% of their waking hours they're going to work. How valuable would it be if you could help them discover what they were made by God to do and spend 70% of their waking hours doing what God made them to do with joy and fruit and impact and they woke up and said thank God it's Monday.

Can you imagine the gift that would be? Not only to them but to the kingdom. And my suggestion is you'll have to become a student. Your role changes. We have unconsciously bought how do I help the people I love be successful and how I help them be happy. That takes you down probably very negative paths. What I can tell you is if you help them discover who God made them to be and fulfill their calling, this sort of side thing will happen. They'll probably be pretty successful and they'll probably be very happy. But that's a side benefit. That's not the goal.

So what is your shape? So number one, ask them what are their spiritual gifts. Help them discover their spiritual gifts. You have the core passages in the New Testament, Romans 12, 1 Corinthians 12 and 14, Ephesians 4.

And I went over those quickly. But there's lots of excellent resources to help people discover their spiritual gifts. So we put together a thing called Your Divine Design. It's an audio series and a DVD series that walks people through a process of discovering their primary spiritual gift. What did God make them? What is their passion spiritually?

What did he create them to do in terms of spiritual gifts? My son Ryan, I'll give a number of real practical illustrations, was not a student. I mean he would have six weeks where he'd get like A's and B's. He was a smart kid but very lazy. And he doesn't mind me saying this because it's very true. And so from 6th grade to 12th grade he didn't put two six weeks together ever. And I mean like his joke is I was grounded I think from 7th grade on. It's not really true but I mean he made me nuts.

He just wouldn't do his work. But so I started, I said okay I'm responsible for his education. Here's a book by C.S. Lewis. I want you to write me a book report. And he did.

And then here's the major Bible themes by Chafer and Walvoord. And I mean it's like this. And this is during the summer. You're not going to work at school? That's okay. I'm going to be responsible. You're going to learn to read, write and think. And so you read a chapter and there's 20 questions at the end. You have to go into the Bible and answer all of them. Well he did. Here's what I learned about my son. He led four of the six volleyball players in high school to Christ. He had a Bible study in our home. When he was supposed to be studying he went and learned how to play the guitar very well. And when he got bored playing the guitar he went out and played the drums. He loved God. He had a passion for God's word and he hated school. Now part of the discipline was I just was on him on him on him on him on him.

And then when he got done with school he said well you know I think I'd like to go to college. I said well I've got a stewardship issue here. Because you know we're going to you know I don't have a lot of money and so we're going to have to both pay as much as we can. But you need to work for a year and save eight to ten thousand dollars because you've never put two six weeks together. Why should I put ten thousand of God's money down and you go off to college and blow ten thousand dollars. So you need to work for a year and then you pay for your first year and if you're consistent and do it well then by then I think I'll be able to handle the next three years.

I'll pay at least your tuition and you can work. And he looked at me like dad. I said yes son. Now do you understand now some of you are looking at me like you must be the harshest meanest baddest father I've ever heard.

Now think about this. Again am I not being consistent. It's not my money it's God's money. He's blown the last. Why would his behavior change because he goes off to college and has more freedom and can do more. Well I will tell you what he did a couple jobs that he thought I don't think I want to do this the rest of my life. He saved about seven or eight thousand dollars. I charged him rent in his bedroom from day one.

The goal is to what help them to become responsible. Now we had fun we played hoop. I loved him. We had a great relationship. Well but what I saw was his motivation and spiritual gifts were in this area of teaching and discipling and I praise God for Joe Stoll who was the president of Moody Bible. He and I were on the phone. I described my son. He said I knew a guy just like him once. I said I'll tell you what I'll let him in Moody Bible.

I'd rather have a guy who's not as studious who loves God and has a proven track record. And I said well who's this person you know that was like this. He said it was me. He said I hated high school. He said I never started studying so I started Greek and the Bible and all the rest. I said Joe you got a doctorate. He goes man Chip it's not about brains.

It's about calling and motivation. My son ended up at Moody. He graduated from Moody. He clapped out of courses. He got through.

He loved Greek. He's a pastor and he's in a ministry that's God's blessing. But part of it was what's his spiritual gift. That's going to be a big part of what God. When you come to Christ God's going to give a primary I believe motivation and a ministry cluster for you to fulfill.

In other words if this is your good work year to walk in doesn't it make sense. He's going to put something in you. A power supernaturally for you to do it. The second is what's their heart.

Where's their passion. Ask them what's your desire. What do you dream about.

What would you love to see happen. I mean that question if you couldn't fail what would you like to do. I mistakenly asked one of my sons that once and he says I want to be a musician.

I thought oh my gosh. Tell me you're joking son. No dad I think God's put this music in my heart and I'm thinking there's a zillion musicians.

Bands everywhere. You got to get a real job. There's no security in this. I mean you know I'm preaching on the weekends of this but now this is my kid who's not going to get a real job right. And so he goes to a little community college. Dad I'm bored with this.

I want to go full time in music and I'm gone. And so I can still tell you where I was. I was here in the kitchen. The tables here.

Jason was right there. And I'm giving him the logical parental well after you get done with school and you need to have enough security. And I'm giving him all this. Basically money.

You got to take care of yourself over here. And the fear of a dad thinking you'll never be happy because you're going to end up you know a has-been little musician that's traveled around and wasted your early years. So I'm you know in my flesh I'm worried about his happiness and money. And so he's in the kitchen and I'm giving him the opposite of what I'm preaching which is not good as a pastor or a father.

And he looked at me and goes hey dad. Who's that guy who said dream great dreams and follow the passions of your heart. Think about it.

Think outside the box and make a difference for Jesus. I said give me a minute. Let me see if I can remember who that guy was. And we had this exchange and I had to say son I'm sorry. I give your right.

Give me a day to process it and then just tell me how can I help you. And it's a long story and he's writing music and doing what God made him to do. Anybody here in this room have that struggle with that?

Anybody in this room have that struggle with those you really care about? You know sort of the practical versus what God might really want him to do. A is for aptitude. What are you good at? The fourth is personality. You need to look at how your kids are wired. And you know whether that's the aptitude whether it's the strength finder test that you can get at any bookstore and go online in 30 minutes and kind of see what people's strengths are or the personality test. There's lots of them the MMPI or sort of the easiest one.

Is that disk test you know high D, I. But my point is it doesn't take long to give someone that you're discipling or one of your kids or grandkids a little test and begin to talk about you know you're high dominant and high I. You're a leader or you like details. But dad I want to be a ballerina. I know but it's sort of a nice way. You're awkward honey and you fall down a lot you know.

And we'll get you one of those little tutus for Halloween and you can run around the neighborhood you know you're only seven. But my point is you want to direct them toward what they're good at. That's how God made them. And then here you want to encourage them to get honest wise counsel about who they are and where they fit and how to move. Because you may have an influence on them especially if they're children or grandchildren. But you want them to get wise counsel from people you really trust and they trust to give some outside objective view of where are they at. Where are they coming from. What are they good at.

How do they come off. You want to just create these mirrors of objectivity to help this person understand what has God made you to do. What is your Ephesians 2 10 good work to walk in. What are you called to do. When you do it you come alive and God blesses it and you're fulfilled. By the way when you are doing what God made you to do and when the people that you are helping are doing what God made them to do they often miss it because it doesn't seem like work. You understand we all have glasses. If you had glasses and there was a blue tint so that everything you saw was blue you would think everyone sees blue. I meet people who see a situation and organizing it.

Well that can't be God's call. I mean it's so easy to organize stuff all you do is this, this, this, this, this, this, this goes over here, this goes over here. I mean it only took me five minutes and I'm thinking how did you do that. Or I watched my son at nine years old read the Bible and ask questions about it and teach his friends at nine. I'm thinking he thinks everyone does that. Or I've seen people who look at something technical and they click, click, click, click, click, click here this is over here well this thing here these are cookies over here I don't know what cookies are.

I mean you could give me that computer until Jesus comes I you know send you know. So what you have to help people is that when they seem like it's not work because it comes so easy now you have to develop the gift and you have to cultivate it. But often that that is that that's their sweet spot that's what they're great at. I remember when I first started teaching that well no one can do this for a living. I mean you get to study you get up in front of people then you get to apply it you get to see what happened.

I mean is this for real like this is a real job. Now I spent hours and hours and hours intensely working but I'd say about 95% of it I think. Are you kidding me I mean someone actually gets to do this because when I open the text and when I study it breaks apart for me I sense what God wants to say this is what you need to I mean it's hard in terms of intense and time and energy. But it's not hard as in oh brother I got one more sermon to write or oh boy I got to get together in a group and we got a dream what we're going to do with this church we got all these problems and boy what a bummer. I love it.

I just love it. I just I get I wake up in the middle of night with ideas I I have to kind of hold myself down you know like quit trying to do too much. Encourage them after the honest wise feedback help them be willing to move out of their comfort zone to fulfill their divine purpose. You need to understand that the people that you love the most the people that you want to help they're the most common command in all of scripture is a very short sentence do not be afraid. That's the most repeated command in all of the Bible Joshua don't be afraid Moses don't be afraid disciples don't be afraid why. As one ancient Greek philosopher said safety is the greatest hindrance to all human endeavor.

All of us tend to want to be safe and secure. I had to literally say to one of my sons son you're in this community college and I mean I you can't go back there next year. What will look at different schools but you have this dream but he just didn't want to get away from home. This is the same son I put roller skates on him and I said you can't come back inside till noon. I don't want to learn it's hard I know it's hard and I pushed him and did all this stuff when he got his first bike. It was like I don't want to learn to ride I mean he just could never get him out of his comfort zone. But man it every step of the way has been pushing him where he didn't think he could go lovingly gently. But you have to help people understand a lot of people that's why you're where you're at. It's called coaching most of us can never fulfill what God made us to fulfill unless there's someone who does two things.

There's an arm around us that says I love you I love you I love you I love you I love you and there's a foot. That I love you so much that I'm not going to let you stay in this little spiritual emotional geographical cul-de-sac of safety. Okay and so the life message is you were created to work. Would that change a person I was made for this the lie is that you are what you do. You've been fed it on you are a housewife you are a doctor you are a scientist you are a builder you are a bricklader you are a plumber.

That's a lie from the pit of hell. The truth is do what you are. You are not what you do do what you are. You are created in the image of God with the spiritual gift with a personality with the passion with aptitude with skills with experience. To do this designed Ephesians 2 10 good work discover it and then help others discover theirs. And when you do work becomes a gift from God instead of drudgery to get out of so you can go play on the weekends. You're listening to Living on the Edge with Chip Ingram and the message you just heard teach them to work unto the Lord is from our series leaving a legacy that lasts forever.

Now Chip will be back to share some insights from today's talk in just a minute. Throughout history moms and dads have been responsible for guiding their kids spiritually emotionally and mentally. But as you look around today's society the family unit is falling apart and young people are more confused about life's purpose and morality than ever.

So how can we fix this problem? Well in this 10-part series Chip's going to help us re-establish a Christ-centered joy-filled home by highlighting five biblical habits parents need to pass on to their sons and daughters. Learn the intentional ways you can build a godly legacy in your family from generation to generation.

Now if you've missed any part of this series catch up through or the Chip Ingram app. Well I'm joined in studio now by Chip and Chip before we go any further I thought it might be helpful for you to talk about what happens when people partner with us financially. I mean when you ask people to support us how are their gifts being used? You know Dave what I want you to know is that when you support Living on the Edge you bring biblical teaching on core issues that at times is not politically correct but is at the core of what brings about real life change and families that are stable and honor God.

Right. So what I'd ask you to do is would you be willing to partner with us as we create these small group resources as we put them on the app as we pay for radio time as we try to help families be all God wants them to be. It requires an enormous amount of time and energy and financial support. And so if you have never given to Living on the Edge now would be a great time to say you know I want to help them reach families. Or if you're a regular giver to Living on the Edge first let me say thank you and then let me ask you this would you be willing to become a monthly partner.

You know there's nothing quite like having people that you know that you can count on each and every month. The amount is immaterial whether it's ten dollars fifty dollars a hundred dollars God uses every single gift. If you would pray and just give whatever he shows you we will be grateful and we'll invest one hundred percent of it right back into the ministry. Thanks so much for whatever he leads you to do. Thanks Chip. Well if you're already a financial partner thank you. With your help Living on the Edge is ministering to more people than ever.

But if you're benefiting from Chip's teaching and haven't yet taken that step now would be a great time to join the team. To send a gift or to become a monthly partner go to or text donate to 74141. That's the word donate to 74141. Or visit

App listeners tap donate. Well with that here's Chip with some final thoughts. As we close today's program I want to give you a little assignment. I mean we've talked a lot about who am I really and what did God make me and what's my shape and how do I discover my spiritual gift and aptitudes.

And you know Lord willing a number of you will really sit down and seriously go through that process. But the reality is a lot of you have a couple ideas in your mind and I want to just help you get started. And so here's the question if money and opportunity were no limitation what would you really like to do with your life. If you could do anything in the world and it wasn't about how much education or how much money or opportunity.

If you could be anything in the whole world what would you really like to do and why. Parents this is a great question and be prepared for oh I don't know and they roll their eyes and you know. But create this environment where we start to think outside the box about your design about the grace of God about some dreams that God has put in your kids heart or a friend's heart.

Instead of how much does it pay what I got to do how much education does it take. And this grind it out mentality that will lead people in places that they don't want to be and God doesn't want for them. So are you ready take that challenge ask that question and let's see what God does. Great prompt Chip and as you guide your sons and daughters to better understand how God created them and what he created them for. Let me tell you about a resource we've developed that can help. It's called The Real You and this free online assessment will open your kids eyes to their unique thinking patterns passions and motivations.

It'll take them about 20 minutes to complete then The Real You will provide them with suggestions for how and where to put their gifts into practice. This is a valuable tool so I hope you'll use it today. To learn more go to that's or text real to 74141. That's the word real R-E-A-L to 74141. Well from all of us here I'm Dave Druey thanks for joining us for this Edition of Living on the Edge.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-05-25 05:28:31 / 2023-05-25 05:40:40 / 12

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