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The Rhythm of Discipleship

Family Life Today / Dave & Ann Wilson, Bob Lepine
The Truth Network Radio
November 4, 2020 1:00 am

The Rhythm of Discipleship

Family Life Today / Dave & Ann Wilson, Bob Lepine

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November 4, 2020 1:00 am

Is my child my disciple? Pastor Adam Griffin coaches parents on what it means to disciple their children. Griffin shares how his family opens their home for hospitality as a way to evangelize their neighbors, and the Wilsons, as well as Bob Lepine, share what their families have done to show their kids that evangelism is a normal and natural part of life. Don't forget bedtime. Tucking the kids into bed is a great opportunity to read Bible stories and pray with and for them.

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raising Godly kids
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All of us as parents want our kids to fit in right Adam Griffin says we ought to rethink that one thing that we should talk about this really really important. Family discipleship is we are trying to raise kids there very used to being different when you're trying to raise a Christian kit because our culture is increasingly secular. The most important things for us to remember his Therese Christian right now is not to raise a kid that's ready to be the most popular kid in school, it's ready to to stand up for what's right even when nobody else wants to this his family life today. Our hosts are Dave and Ann Wilson. I'm Bob Lapine can find us online@familylifetoday.com how can we raise kids who fit in, and yet still stand up for their faith. At the same time talk more about that today with Adam Griffin stay with us and welcome to family life to. Thanks for joining us. We need to do this again a few years ago at our church. We got together three couples who are now empty-nesters and we had an evening where they shared with the parents in our church. What they would do differently if they were doing parenting again great that you get you get parents together and asked them tell us about your parenting and most of those parents can go will hear the mistakes we made right we overlook some of the victories and were just aware of the fact that things we wish we could've done differently, but these empty-nesters had a lot of great insight into some of the very practical things that they were doing an these younger parents work eating it sit right now.

Beside an empty-nesters name Bob Lapine Bob and Marianne, what would you share well I think we go back to some of those things we wish we done differently.

We talk this week about trying to model goodness and forgetting that we needed to show our kids that were fellow strugglers and that we mess up and confession repentance. I remember a guest on family life today who said every discipline encounter he has with his child.

His goal is to have that child love Jesus more.

At the end of that discipline encounter. I thought that's not what I was thinking what I was disciplining my kids. I was in. My goal is to get you to straighten up and make my life easier right so it would be those kinds of learnings where I go back and say yeah I had a do over.

I do some things differently and I'm just thinking we got a lot of young parents who are listing to family life to the eight who would love some coaching and we had a great coach you have a good, good is joining us this antivibration family today. I'm talking about Adam Griffin joining us. Welcome back. Hey, thanks for having me Adam is a pastor from East Dallas. He and his wife have been married for 10 years. They got three sons at home. He has written a book together with Matt Chandler called family discipleship and in reading the book I was just impressed with the fact that this is something that you move from the kind of the abstract ideas of we need to be about these important topics into some of the very practical. Here's how were trying to live this out in our home. If you are sitting down with a couple and they told you are.

Babies can be born next month and we just want your coaching tips on what we should do in the early years, and then what we should start getting ready for as our kids get older. Where would you start with them the great question.

The congregation actually I pastor is very young and so actually have that question a lot is a lot of people having kids for the first time thinking about what is discipleship look like from day one from step one and I think I wanted things you pointed out that you would want to do over and we say that while you don't get to actually do anything over there a lot a try against their a lot of him to try again may not be able to do yesterday over you but I will try again. And that's true from day one of parenting. It's really easy to find things you regret or wish you had done different.

But for every one of us we can come up with the example of what look like in each one of our families and whether it's around this table around your church and it's gonna be different for every family. So the struggle was when writing a book. I don't want to just write a book at this will. Here's what looks like for the griffins and the letters the formula, follow the recipe and your kids will turn out great.

Yeah just like us but we have some general categories and then hopefully some helpful examples.

It's a well while it doesn't have to look just like the griffins it could look more generally, like the griffins will give you an example. So where I live.

I live in a neighborhood that is very diverse and it's actually a lot of refugees a lot of people who have moved from another country escape something horrific. Another trying to learn a new culture and so for me the general principle might be. Hey, invite your kids and how you want to demonstrate biblical hospitality. The specific example might be in the Griffin family. We try to do our best to welcome those families that are new to our neighborhood.

Understanding that there refugees and new to the culture to let them know if there's anything you need help translating anything you need help navigating in the this the city ordinances are in the city are as you need help finding a job or getting resources. That's why were here without turning other people into a charity helping our kids understand this is how we make friends this how adults make friends. We don't do it like you do we do it like this and this is how we love our neighbor as of the general principle will be a families invite your kids and how you love your neighbor and here are some ways to think about whether you are person goes to the gym or your person who's involved in a school your person. It's involved in the community. Invite your kids and how you do that, and here's what looks like for the griffins as our kids were growing up. I have the impulse.

The thought that maybe out Thanksgiving. We should see if we could volunteer somewhere where there serving meals right to people who are less fortunate and at the same time I'm having that impulse. I'm thinking it's Thanksgiving and you want to do the family thing that the analyte is a Detroit Lions you want to make the dinner. That's the memorable dinner you want to make a memory for your family.

So I always defaulted that kinda be in the family centered. This is how were to celebrate because that's what I did when I was growing up. I do look back and think I should have been more purposeful with our kids and say this is what we do we serve, we find ways to serve and it's not just mom and dad go do it while we get a babysitter for you, but we find ways you can serve right alongside of us. Yeah, I think one things you just brought up even in a joke.

Talk about the Detroit Lions you love the Detroit Lions write like this organization. Your kids would not be surprised to find out you'd like to watch the Detroit Lions today is a forced love Ursula but it's it's not hard to be around you be surprised by that and never talk about family discipleship as I want families where if your kid found out you're a Christian, that would be so heartbreaking.

It should be so obvious to your kid because they see the way that you are in the word the way that you pray the way that you follow the Lord and what you say them how colors your conversations and it should be so ordinary for your kids to know you love the Lord.

At the same time. It's okay to invite them into like a the fact that dad loves the Detroit Lions maybe family discipleship is gonna look like a when it's halftime when the Doolittle locker room talk with dad let me talk to you about dedication. Let me talk about were seen in the game and doesn't have to be the okay let's stop our normal life and let's start this kind of false Christian life on the side it's seeing that God infiltrates every avenue of what we do it. It's part of everything that we are, whether it's our love of football, or whether it's our love of crafts, or whether it's, you know, our jobs, it's the Lord is a part of all of it. That's what I want our kids to see what you made this comment and I really know exactly what you meant, but I heard this and I read your book about love in your neighborhood and in the diversity your neighborhood again only know what you meant by this, but you made this comment.

Maybe you guys in here they said some about taken doughnuts to bus stop yeah I'm like okay that's interesting yet.

I'm guessing your boys are watching this happen. So what about what my boys really one of the doughnuts. If you want to start kids wait for the bus in front of our home and this is how we submit our refugee neighbors is as their teenagers and their kids are waiting for the bus we decide either literally coming to us there in her front yard. One we just go out and offer them something to eat and strike up conversations and then leverage those into opportunities to share the gospel. That's the driving force behind it, not to create some version where kids will just witness it. But we invite our kids because we want them to grow upwards very normal to see their parents evangelizing and discipling and being exposed other cultures has been very good for our kids as well affect one thing that we should talk about this really really important. Family discipleship is we are trying to raise kids there very used to being different when you're trying to raise a Christian kid because our culture is increasingly secular when the most important things for us to remember is to raise a Christian right now is not to raise a kid that's ready to be the most popular kid in school it's ready to to stand up for what's right even when nobody else wants to walk us through that conversation, Adam. I planted that sound like you're talking your kids will even this week.

I'll give you a very present example we were talking through the story of Zacchaeus in our family deception time before I put them to bed. The story of Zacchaeus's is about a wee little man who comes in of the Lord, and even though the entire crowd thought it was a bad idea for Jesus to go to his house and so we talked about is is it always accepted by the crowd to follow Jesus, or does Jesus always do with the crowd thinks is right and there are no it's not into the land which we can use in our houses.

Did you do know that following Jesus will sometimes make you weird and sometimes make you different and it doesn't mean it's not right. It's actually righteously abnormal as the words we use in the book that we want them to be prepared to stand up for what's right even when nobody else thinks it's a good idea and that's because we believe scripturally. God says if you follow me. People in this world are going to hate you, and so if I'm not preparing my kids to be hated by the world that I'm in a set amount to a world that is very different than what is the reality and the reality is that this world its sensitivities are offended by many of the things that I believe and so I want my kids ready to be strong.

Not that they would be intentionally irritating to the world, but that they be ready to believe what's true even if it does irritate their friends or the people around them and it's very different than my parenting instincts that say hey be universally loved your kids and others around you and create kids that are universally loved other teachers and those around them and their peers.

Instead I'm single prepare kids to universally love God no matter what no matter what their friends think the matter with her teachers think I want to understand what is true right and call attention as you even example about the bus stop death not upset over thinking wow what a different perspective than many parents, and even Christian homes. There's kids in my front yard, trampling down my my grass waiting for bus stop every day of the bus stop. I want this kids and I are in your perspective is God's bringing the world to us. Let's go out there and love them I'm saying and they don't look like us there different backgrounds that all again, pastor church. I know many people in my own church would say I don't want those kids and those kind of people in my front yard and what is that parent just translated her model for his kid yeah yeah opposite of being the light of Jesus and loving your neighbor, and yet you walk out there and you and I don't think he said boys. Here's how you love your neighbor you just did it because what you think Jesus would do that. That's what you be doing doughnuts always work. By the idea of asking God what you put in front of us and that's what happened is longing to show as he's longing to disciple our kids.

He's discipling us along the way so I like that you're saying who are you, what is God put before you your living in this neighborhood where our neighborhoods like and Bob. I would say that's one of my regrets. I think it's easy today to become so consumed with school so consumed with sports we go to church on Sunday.

I think a lot of parents feel overwhelmed night homework and covariate in your doing school online in they feel overwhelmed. So now you're thinking all great now I have had a ministry to and I didn't have to see me.

That is such a good point because at I think every parent will relate to that.

Every important thing in this kids life. So are we saying that now Adam Juergen add something else important to this and we were already stressed enough, and I think actually what were saying is let's not do the disservice of pretending those things are more important than leaving your kids towards eternity. So will will add it to the listing like no I also got to do a family devotions like no to know if your time for this, the new Ashley don't have time for all the sports and activities, and this is so much more important than whether you're feeding your kid with your clothing, your kid whether getting your kid in the right school, the this spiritual leadership of your home is the priority.

The Bible puts on your family but we make it one of a list of priorities and so we try to write this book in a way to to really communicate. This is not to stress you out with one more thing. This is to help you understand the truth of all the things you're doing and I think it's I mean a lot of guys maybe you're like me, where I coach I school football you put a defense in front of me as of old quarterback I'm I can tell you what attack it. I walk in my house and my wife says can you lead a spiritually Mike what's I look like, you know, I know a cover to look like a know how to throw a seam right down the middle and looked at you want me to what I'm supposed plant widely what you say to the dad or the mom. Yeah how I do it. I don't feel equipped.

I've never been trained. I've been trying these other years I know how to get a sales job done, but leave my family and create disciples that the pastors divestitures a job that ate my job or that's my wife's job. What you say that that parent will do you look off the safety and the safety of Satan. In this case, and then you have thought a lot. Okay, everything is set in Venice every safe you say yeah yeah I think that's the purpose of the book we wrote with the say hey there's a lot of families out there who didn't grow up in a home to disciple them and there's a lot of families out there that are going have got all these resources I got kids Bible and I got kids music and I got kids storybooks but house is part of a plan.

What I'm supposed to do. This is occasional. Is it sporadic is it.

Is it every day.

Is it all day and one of my kids don't seem like they're driving with the ends of the book is to help no matter what your family looks like no matter how it's made up to be able to sit down and get on the same page with your spouse or your church or your community with what can a very simple plan that's ingrained in what our life already looks like, how can a plan like that happen in a way that's not gonna stress me out or overwhelm me is can help me see the permission, the empowerment of the Holy Spirit and at the same time not minimize the importance of it to make it something were yeah everyone, so I will think about that, but this is something that we are perfectly capable of doing, not of our own strength or will but because of the God that we follow God has made this a priority. Therefore, we know God has empowered his people for it not to do without him but to do in and through him and and one section of book you actually model for us.

What you do at night. Yeah me. I'm a guy and I just tell me what to do. Just tell me what to do this and you walk through bedtime walk us through bedtime.

Well we have a very simple rhythm. Often it's just we read scripture we share. We sing and there's prayer and that's very very simple narc guy say some guys just went oh boy is not saying that we have freight but I'm guessing it's just pretty simple, right. It is very simple that we sing a very simple song that we sing at church, which is a benediction or a doxology. I'll tell you of the people without busting my wife out of the two people in my marriage. One of us is not a great singer and it's great. It's still a chance for us to sing with our kids. It's not goofy it's not strange. This is singing is something the Lord has called us to doubt. Not every families can assume that every families getting of the bongos and the guitar and worshiping together a look for some people, that is it for them.

They love that. Maybe there putting in the. The music and there there listening to it and there'd focusing and meditating.

That's not my family. My family is read a very short scripture story.

Often it's a parable or narrative from the Bible and there were to just ask a couple questions about it, like Terry, do you see what I see here or what you see from in the older, our kids get the more complicated those questions can be in the more vulnerable and honest I am with my own struggles in the Rinne sing something almost as we conclude our time together.

Let's just remind ourselves to line our hearts around the Lord and then we prayed together and as our kids get older, we invite them to pray or ask each other what they can pray for and that they share those things with each other and put your hands in Lahaina, we often do will will hold hands while we sing and then will put her hands in the middle. While we pray and it's another it's a physical ritual that helps focus because my kids like you guys have described your three boys. They can be all over the place. But if we do something like pay all the grievance or to put her hands in the middle and the end of a prayer we say a man it's gonna be honest like a break in the huddle is a sweet treat for my family and helps them focus and it feels like were doing something together. You just modeled the Griffin family. I'm guessing the Lapine's and look at the way the Wilson's.

You can it's almost like a step back to what Sgt. look like you saying know what we do.

Instead, you know what what is going to be a will sinister Lapine thing that makes disciples are unique way that's led us on the thinking is that there's a time moments and milestones are to look different for everybody, but the framework itself can work for everyone that were saying there should be some time set aside for sing.

This is timer family is just thinking about the Lord.

There should be times were taken advantage of things throughout the day and then there's milestones we should be aiming at pointing toward celebrating the Lord to something really significant and how do we incorporate those three aspects of the framework and how we disciple our kids you have life versus for your kids, you incorporate that into bedtime.

Some yes absolutely.

As we put them to bed up to some friends about this too. It's one of my favorite things. So my friends of written kind of original blessings for the kids became so proud of you.

I love you these things I see in you what we've done for each one of our kids is for each one of our kids. We chosen a verse from the Bible that we will share with them every night as we put them to bed. And as they got older. It's the first verse that they memorize. Now they can say it back to us. But for each one of our kids for Oscar it's from Corinthians we say be on the alert stand firm in the faith, act like a man to be strong and let everything you do be done in love. And it's a great blessing verse but it's also when we incorporated into discipline will say hey, remember how at night.

Will Sadie let everything you do be done in love.

Walk me through what just happened. Do you feel like what's going on your life right now is living up to this principle we want to live to the everything we do is done in love.

And the same thing from other boys with their versus depicted versus fears and honestly we my wife and I just had a conversation where we said hey what versus stick out to us from the Bible that would be something we really hope would be true for sons or what situationally happens in the Bible.

We hope we get to repeat in this one. So for my son Gus, my second born. We chose the last words of David to his son Solomon where he says hey basil he says be a man and follow God and that's what we wanted for him in the for my son Theodore third born is a little bit more of like I there's so much in the Bible that is so good and we want him to remember. We settled on Micah 68 just to really try to give them something clear. That was a summary to say we want you to be all about justice and mercy and walking humbly with your God. And hopefully as they get older they can appreciate the greater depth, but right now it's just words they remember. I remember talking to mom and dad who would change that every year on the child's birthday that come up with a verse for the year that was gonna be there focus person again. That kind of a regular rhythm, you can have a life verse, but if there are yearly verses as the kids are growing in the new chapters are new faces that you can incorporate in that's just a great way to keep planning God's word in the life of the child and keep reinforcing spiritual principles and I'm thinking of the dead were the mom listening right now feel like they blew it. Maybe their kids are teenagers.

Maybe they're older, maybe they're even still young, but there listening on boy haven't done any of this.

What he said it wanted say it's never too late to start and one of the best first steps you can take with kids is to have what we've got a bounce around a lot is that I repent in stock so if you need to sit down with your growing or grown kids and first asked for forgiveness saying I wish our family had been different. There are some things I wish I would've done more, and there are some things I wish would've done it all. Maybe, and ask for forgiveness to say man, mom or dad did lead you the way we wanted just ask for forgiveness and then help your kids take ownership of what you want to do going forward. To say I want to spend more time in the word together. Is there any way that you have in your mind you think that our family could do that well.

Is there a time that we have in our week is there a meal or is there commute or is there a kind of a cross poinsettia family Artie has read say let's dedicate some of that time to the Lord if it's her drive to or from church or maybe it's once a week I take you out for breakfast on some.

He told me that so many kids there like how can I with a number of kids. I have possibly get involved in each kids life and one of the ideas that came from a family with a lot kids that I get. I there's so many things you could do this it every month on the day of the month. That's the same as their birthday day so there born 5 August, and it's the fifth of every month. They spent a little extra time with that one can so might be if they're older now. Maybe if they write a letter or a text to that one kid to say so for the month is portion of today's your day the month. I'm thinking about you and praying for you and then if they're in their home.

Maybe it's they stay up a little bit later with the kid but to give that child a little bit of extra focus and again it's taking the time like you would in your workplace like you would in any relationship to soundness. Spent a little bit of time thinking about this and planning it, giving it some intentionality. We do that with almost anything else, but we expect parenting come to us naturally in the fact that it we struggle with that we beat ourselves up over it. Instead of going eight.

This is hard for everybody. The universal truth is it is really hard to be a parent and the other universal truth is it's really hard to be a kid and so if we can give each other some grace there to say all of us make mistakes. That's why we have a perfect Savior who so willing to forgive and calls us to something important and doesn't just ignore. Don't even try doing a bother gnosis knob on the ones gonna save kids about inviting you into how I do it and what a grace that we could with full encouragement and confidence walk for knowing that we made so many mistakes knowing that other people around us might judge us.

Honestly, for what you're trying to do now or we should have done earlier. However, the judgment, the world wants to operate here.

I can still walk forward and confidence knowing who I was, does not have to be who I'm going to be in the family. The Lord's given me, even if that child is prodigal. I know that the father loves to save people. There's no such thing as a hopeless cause for the gospel.

So I see that over and over again in Scripture that he liked the father waiting for the prodigal is so eager to be compassionate and I can be like that too is I try to imitate my heavenly father, I would add this as I'm listening because we talked about the parent side the kids side. If you're sitting listening, thinking boy I never got this. Yeah, I wish I had even 10% of what I've heard today. I would say does this. The child maybe or 2030. Maybe your new parent. It's time to forgive your parents it's a hard thing to let go of that for you.

You know and become the parent.

Maybe they weren't that sort of my mission is like him to be the dad I never had. But at some point I had to forgive my dad for failing in this area and I was okay and there was a step of freedom to become the man got a call made me do I understand that you got some signage, some Griffin family signage up at your house set aside as we have a oh we have a mission statement that we posted in the hallway of our home and again. For some families they be like let's okay and for us. Unlike men, like it's two thirds of my kids getting and read yet, so don't even imagine that is not there walk out everyday and reciting it either. We just thought we should in order to create a family discipleship culture in our home. We want to, summarize, who were going to be and how we make decisions as a family. So for us. One of the aspects of our mission statement that helps us make decisions is that it's to to know God to make him known and to honor him in all that we do and so if you take the bus stop for. For instance, we might say there's kids meeting in front of our house, so if our job is to know God to make him known and honor him in all that we do what we do. Would it be to say, not in my backyard on the call the city about this or would it be to say the Lord's brought these people to us there there right in front of us was it look like to make him known and does it honor God to bring them donuts. I would say 100% yes now maybe my gluten-free brothers and sisters might not, but I would say yes this is what the Lord's done for us, but also helps us decide what we expose our kids to what they're gonna watch with the listen to is based on will does it honor the Lord does honor the Lord when we do these things. I think that one simple idea of having a family mission statement and saying what are we really all about is a family you had a family mission statement right now. Would it and the we have time to get into of his then a discussion with our sons like it's really important for the parents to know it not always for the kids you know as long as you know, because most parents don't even know what are we shooting at it on that family mission statement gives it to us. I think there's a balance of letting them in on it and sometimes just no one is parents like that's the goal now and it comes back to the word we talked about intentionality rope was homeless. It's where we go. We have a plan before trying to drive somewhere his parents do we know where were try to get to Christ and to have a map and say here's where were going. Here's what matters.

This is what's gonna be important us. These are what our values are.

That goes a long way for moms and dads to have family discipleship happening in your home and thank you for the time thanks for the wisdom and I appreciate the book and all you and Matt have poured into this for moms and dads like us to benefit from.

It's really been my pleasure. Thank you and I will encourage your listers warmaking Adam and Metz book available this week. If you're able to support the ministry of family life today with the donation. Just ask for the book as our thank you gift to you in exchange for your support go to family life to.com to donate or call one 800 FL today.

Make sure you let us know you'd like a copy of the book family discipleship and were happy to send it to you.

We are grateful for your ongoing support of this ministry. In fact, we are especially grateful for that support. In this particular season, David Robbins, who's the president of family life is here with us and and David this been a challenging season for our ministry for a lot of families. A lot of us wondering when his life to get back to normal and we project and we hope man after the election will be back to normal after the year ends will be back to normal. But what's true is this is a type of wilderness season.

There's all sorts of things in the Scripture around wilderness seasons and how it shapes us and like many of you, we at family life were feeling the effects of COBIT and and everything going on in 2020, and many of her outreaches have been drastically shifted but we are so grateful to our faithful financial supporters who make sure we are able to continue to produce new content that meets people right where they are and helps with the needs that are surfacing during this unique time I got a message from a listener that was impacted by some of our coded outreaches that we been doing and and he said thank you so much for all of the content. Your ministry is putting out during this pandemic. In this unique season is been such a tremendous blessing to me helping me shepherd. My two young children through this helping me and my wife and our marriage and help me walk with a dear friend who is not a believer and his father suffered through COBIT and passed away. Again, this is a wilderness season for many of us, and yet God shapes us and it and we are here for you and were so thankful for how our financial partners have been here for us also.

Indeed, we are David, thank you for that and I hope our listers can be with us again tomorrow work and talk about how grandparents can be more actively involved in helping to equip and disciple of their grandchildren, Josh and Jen Mulvihill are going to join us for that conversation. Hope you can join us as well. Thank our engineer today. Keith Lynch along with our entire broadcast production team on behalf of our hosts Dave and Ann Wilson. I'm Bob Lapine you back next time for another edition of family life today. Family life to a is a production of family life of Little Rock, Arkansas. Accrue ministry help for today hope for tomorrow


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