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Keeping Love Alive - Volume 3 - Challenge #3 - Children, Part 1

Living on the Edge / Chip Ingram
The Truth Network Radio
March 29, 2022 6:00 am

Keeping Love Alive - Volume 3 - Challenge #3 - Children, Part 1

Living on the Edge / Chip Ingram

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March 29, 2022 6:00 am

New and experienced parents agree, raising kids is hard - and it puts a strain on one’s marriage. In this program, Chip asks… how can couples effectively parent their kids and still keep their marriages fresh? As he picks up in his series "Keeping Love Alive, Volume 3", Chip provides moms and dads with timeless, biblical principles to intentionally raise their kids… together.

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I asked a young friend of mine recently how he and his wife were adjusting to being new parents.

He responded, It's tough. There's only so much you can do to prepare. Whether you're a new or experienced parent, raising kids is hard, not to mention the strain it puts on our marriages.

So how can we as couples successfully parent our kids and still keep our marriages fresh? Stay with me. Welcome to this Edition of Living on the Edge with Chip Ingram.

I'm Dave Drouie, and the mission of these daily programs is to intentionally disciple Christians through the Bible teaching of Chip Ingram. I'm sure there's countless moms and dads out there shaking their heads saying, Yes, parenting is difficult. Every day is a challenge.

What do I do? Well, Chip continues his brand new series, Keeping Love Alive Volume 3, by sharing a few key biblical principles for how to intentionally raise your kids. And if you're looking for deeper insight into what it means to be an effective parent, keep listening after this message to hear some practical advice from Chip.

You're not going to want to miss what he has to share. All right, let's join Chip now as he unpacks the third challenge every great marriage has in common. If you'll pull out your notes, there has been a radical shift in culture, if you haven't noticed, in the last 5 to 10 years, but even more over the last 30 to 40. Your child's world is more violent, more difficult, more fearful, more uncertain. What's right?

What's wrong? We've got gender fluidity. We have a complete shifting of values and culture, and it is a very difficult... We have a technology that bombards your kids at ages.

I won't go into all the research, but basically it creates a world that is violent, uncertain, fearful, and defective. We live in a day now where 80% of all children will at one time live with only one of their parents. Only about 22 to 23% of all the families in America are currently, and this is a five year old statistic, so it's probably not this good, live in a family where both mother and father that are the biological parents of those children. So one out of five families have sort of a design with a mom and a dad that these are our kids.

What's great is in God's grace, those of us that have a blended family or those of us that have been through rough times, we become great trophies of God's grace as he redeems those things. So all to say that the challenge in parenting is how do you navigate your child through these landmines of change and moral relativism of overload, drugs, alcohol, peer pressure, and all the stuff coming at them. So if you'll open your notes, I want to give you four principles for positive parenting, effective parenting, and a defective world. These are four principles.

I'll talk about how to develop your child's personal life and how God made them. There's another message on discipline that probably most of you would like a little help on, but this one is the overall principles. Principle number one is this, is that effective parenting begins with positive, clear-cut objectives.

In other words, you have to have a target on the wall. You've got to get super clear about what are we trying to accomplish as parents. The key passage in the New Testament is Ephesians 6.4. In the Phillips translation, it says, fathers, don't overcorrect your children or make it difficult for them to obey the commandment. Bring them up with Christian teaching and Christian discipline. Underline don't overcorrect your child, that's a negative command. And then underline bring them up, which is a positive command.

Notice who it's addressed to. Parents have both responsibility, but I did my thesis in seminary because I had these two little boys and I'm a dad, and my dad worked really hard at it and we restored some things, but I didn't learn how to be a dad for my dad. And so I looked up every verse in the Bible on men, parenting, and then I had a graduate degree in another area, and so I did social research on what does the best social research say in psychology and sociology about what are the case studies that make for parents that raise positive kids. And what I can tell you is the Bible is really clear that men have a unique role. Men and women have about the same influence in terms of mother and father on your child's self-concept. However, men have a disproportionate impact on the moral development of both little boys and little girls. And there's something about God has made the fathers as the one morally responsible for, you know what, we do all this together. Women obviously have greater nurturing ability, both psychologically but physically for sure, but in terms of who's going to own responsibility for what happens in this home, a lot of men, one, we feel very inadequate, but guys, I got to tell you, this is our mission. Fathers, don't exasperate your children. It's easy to be hard on them.

And so, but bring them up. The word means some of your other translations will say, nurture them. The word means rear, nurture, to nourish. In classical Greek, it meant the physical development and then as you know, words develop over time. It later became by this time in Greek literature, it meant the total development of your child. In other words, the education, the moral development, the relational, the IQ, emotionally.

In other words, you want to bring them up and you have two tools. Notice, put a box around the word Christian teaching and put another box around Christian discipline. Christian teaching is you shape your kids with words. Christian discipline is you shape your kids with actions. Some parents struggle a lot because they talk and talk and talk and talk and talk and talk and talk and their kids don't obey.

Most kids are far better students of their parents than parents are of their kids. And what your kids do, you have, you know, you're sitting on the couch and you're sitting over here and they hit their sister or brother or they slam the door or do something you've told them 30 times, hey, stop that right now. 13 seconds later, hey, I told you, quit hitting each other. But see, what your kids have watched is you don't get up out of the chair.

Talk, talk, talk, talk, talk. And then, here's what they know. They've watched you.

Hey, dadgummit, and possibly stronger, how many times have I told you? And, you know, they look calmly at each other and go, I better stop hitting him. Because what they've learned is what they've studied you. Until you get angry, until you're out of control, probably nothing's going to happen.

By contrast is, you can actually learn to do this, is you can say, Bobby, Jimmy, come here, okay? And then you get down at their level and you look them right in the eye and in a soft voice you say, I'm going to tell you one time, don't hit each other. If you do, there's no more warnings, okay? This is what's going to happen. And, of course, they've learned from how you used to do it, and you go sit down.

And now you are waiting. And the moment you see it, you get up and say, Bobby, Jimmy, right now, you to your room, you to your room, I'll be there in just a second. And then under control, without any anger, you administer discipline. And when they do it again, you do it exactly the same way. And then you do it exactly the same way. And for two weeks, they'll wear you out.

And after two weeks, you know what? You can say, okay, I want you to pick up your toys and it's time to go. And guess what they do? They pick up their toys and it's time to go. And they talk back and they're sassing and doing this, and, you know, very calmly. You have to teach them instruction.

This is right, this is wrong. When they're small, they're concrete thinkers. When they're small, we talk too much.

When they get older, preteens and teenagers, we talk too little. It's absolutely, I'll just use the word, stupid. You've got a four-year-old. Don't you understand that when you do this and you do that and this is what God says and you could really hurt your little brother and someday if you ever do this. And then the kid's going, their brains, they're concrete.

Right, wrong. Do right, good consequences. Do wrong, bad consequences.

And that's it. They don't need long lectures. Then what we do when they get older, well, they're teenagers, they're just going to be like that and you don't talk with them. What they need then is you need to lay across the bed and what's going on? What are you thinking? What was going through your mind when you did that? And you stay connected to them.

So you have two tools and we'll talk about how to do that. But here's the principle. It's the principle of focus.

Most parents parent out of fear. What you want to have is a crystal clear focus and I call this God's dream versus the American dream for your child. Under God's dream, write down Romans 8.28 and then add verse 29. If you've been around church circles or been to any Christian bookstore, Romans 8.28 is on a plaque somewhere. For we know that God works all things together for the good to them that love God.

Right, got it? According to his purposes. We sort of leave off 29 and 29 talks about those whom he also called, he also predestined and what he predestined though was to conform them to the image of Christ. God's target for your child, this is going to be hard to take, is not to make it in the NBA, is not to make the traveling team, is not to have a beautiful voice, is not necessarily to be able to play the violin, the piano and the trumpet, is not necessarily to get all straight A's. God's number one agenda for your child is to make him or her more and more like Jesus.

And so that's your target. Your target is their character and their spiritual and their moral development. Now if they happen to be a good athlete, if they happen to be musically talented, if they happen to make the traveling team, in other words, if you would look at the average parent and look at where their energy and time goes to what they try to develop. I live in a place where parents will move out of one neighborhood to another to get into a school system and their kids need to have a 4.3 in all AP classes and they still may not get into Stanford or Harvard or Columbia. And we have kids every year where they might have a perfect score, but they don't get into that. And from their family background, if you don't become a doctor or a lawyer or get into one of those schools, we have kids who line up every year where the train is and they step in front of it and they commit suicide because they don't measure up and they brought shame to their family.

Their value is completely in their performance. And we don't want to do that, but we tend to do that. The culture is the American dream is your kids need to be upwardly mobile, they need to have more than you and unconsciously it's you want them to be successful. Do you realize how miserable quote successful people are? Not all of them, but if that's the goal, if your whole world is I only am what I can accomplish, what I can achieve, and then they buy into bigger is better, more is better, until I have this, own this, wear this. And so what you need to understand as a parent, you have to have a crystal clear target. What are you trying to develop? Because your target will determine where you put your energy and your time.

Now here's the amazing thing. When a child understands he's deeply loved by God, when a child understands their value is apart from whether they're good at sports or not good at sports, or whether they get all A's. Now of course do we want our kids to do their best, do we teach them to be disciplined and all the rest, but that's far different from it all boils down to. Because the truth of the matter is unconsciously we as parents live vicariously through our kids and we really think that when they do really well that's what makes us look good. What would change in your parenting if you had a crystal clear target that said I'm going to use words and I'm going to use actions to help my son and my daughter, whether from the time they're two or four or eight in different ways, preteens to teenage, what kind of environments, what do we do, where do we go, what's going to look like our family table eating together. The research is amazing. If you never opened a Bible or never prayed, if you ate together three or four or five times a week it will transform your kids. I mean IQ goes up, success in everything goes up, there's certain things that we were designed to do, eat together, being tucked in, feeling like someone cares about you, being heard, those kind of things what parents do and we're now living in a day where screens, pace, and speed are beginning to pull more and now it becomes more and more natural because so few people live what I'm talking about but then ask yourself how are most parents doing with their kids.

It's not pretty. Crystal clear target. Second, effective parenting demands that we practice what we preach. Paul would write to the Corinthians, 1 Corinthians chapter 4, I'm not writing these things to shame you but to warn you as my dear children, even though you have 10,000 guardians in Christ, you do not have many fathers for in Christ Jesus I became your father through the gospel therefore I urge you, here's that word again, imitate me.

We've touched on this already somewhat but it's the principle of modeling. More really is caught than taught. I jotted, this is an unknown quote, I don't know where it comes from, let every father remember that one day his son or daughter will follow his example instead of his advice. You cannot impart what you don't possess, you have to be significantly what you want your kids to become. Now let me fast forward because having done what I've done for almost 40 years and watching parents at different stages, I've been with parents that so worked for their kids and it was education or it was success or sports and all the rest and I like sports and I demanded that my kids you know do their very best in school and all the rest but I can't even try to tell you what it's like to sit down with someone that has grown children that make no contact with them anymore that are super successful but they don't have any relationship with their mom and dad anymore.

I have one particular friend who his sister scored a perfect score on the ACT and on the SAT. They came from another country, they were immigrants and the parents were like, I mean three or four hours of study after school every day, prepared starting in the sixth grade for the SATs and she has a graduate degree from the most prestigious university and a doctorate from the Harvards of the world and she has changed her phone number and address multiple times so her family can never get in touch with her and I can't just tell you how many parents realize we were really successful and you know that the ladder was against the wrong wall and I sit with them and they say you know something at the end of the day whether they made 20,000 or 50,000 or 100,000 or whether they went to this school or that school you know if my son or daughter if I could do it all over if they were kind, if they loved God, if they were other centered, if they weren't arrogant, if they had a strong marriage, if they cared for other people and they were like the kind of people that you would just love to be around that would be so much more important than where I pushed them and what I wanted to see happen because you got to define success and they'll get it first from the target and then they'll get it from the teacher and you are their teachers. You profoundly more than anything else in all the world shape your kids attitudes, their minds and their hearts so we've got a target, we have a teacher which is you and then it happens in a very significant environment and the environment is effective parenting not only has a crystal clear positive target not only does you do we practice what we preach and by the way when I say that don't hear perfection in other words we practice what we preach, what do we preach? We preach when we blow it, when we sin, when there's an outburst of anger, when we do something that we know is wrong what do we do? We admit it, we're honest, we're vulnerable, we go to our father, we confess it and if we confess our sins he's faithful and just to forgive us right? So that means that when I blew up with my kids and I disciplined out of anger and then I realized it because it was the third time and I can't believe it and it was all me then I actually got with my kids and I asked them to forgive me and I said I'm really trying to be the kind of dad that God wants me to and the way I disciplined you was not how God wants you to I did it out of anger my voice was loud I got super intense I could tell you were afraid and I'm sorry I mean to a five-year-old to a six-year-old will you forgive me and you know what kids are amazing yeah dad I forgive you well could we do like I do with you because when you when I discipline you right I help you understand I ask you what did you do wrong I have him verbalize it and who did you offend or hurt well I hurt I hurt my sister and well who else well well God because he told me not to okay well let's I put my kids and sit him in my lap after I disciplined them and I'd teach him to pray father would you forgive me thank you that right now just like on a on a whiteboard you wiped away at all and you love me and you care for me and I'm sorry that I hit so-and-so okay have you got it yeah and we pray together my um my youngest son I see so he's a pastor now he said some of the most precious deepest times of connection he and I ever had was after I disciplined him it's one thing when people accept you when you're doing something good right but it's something amazing when someone accepts you when you've blown it and that's that's what God does for us and that's what you want your kids to learn so when I say you got to practice what you preach it doesn't mean you have it all together it just means you model for your kids exactly what God wants you to do so effective parenting builds relationship that bond is the key word it's and I'm when I say bond I mean a connection of the child's heart with your heart I put there's a couple divine examples the Apostle Paul is speaking to the Thessalonians and it's interesting he gives us two word pictures he talks about his time with them he says but we were gentle among you like a circle the word mother caring for her little children how do moms care they nurture they love they hold their kids close we loved you so much that we were delighted to share with you not only the gospel of God but also our lives as well because you had become very dear to us underline the word love to you underline the word to share with you and underline dear to us do you see the tenderness there's a tenderness there's a tenderness with your kids and then notice he goes on he says for you know that we dealt with each of you as a father well how do fathers deal with his own children encouraging comforting and urging you right there's there's a goal out there there's an objective to live lives worthy of God's call who called you into his kingdom and his glory see part of what dads do that's a little bit different than most moms at least is you know it's not just we want you to be Christlike we want you to figure out God puts you on the planet you know children are like an arrow in your quiver what do you do with arrows you know you don't get like a bunch of arrows and go whoa has anybody seen my arrows lately what do you do with arrows you pull arrows out and you cock them and you get it you get a target and you release them you want your kids to discover why God made you this is why you're good at this this is why you had these passions this is why you struggle with this you you are a unique thing because he has a calling on your life your kids will never be happier or more fulfilled than if they discover what God wants them to do and they do it Chip will join us here in studio with his application in just a minute you've been listening to the first part of his message challenge number three children from his series keeping love alive volume three if you were able to press pause on life take a step back and really evaluate your marriage how does it look is it just a little out of sync are there a few areas that need some work or is your relationship on the verge of completely falling apart through his newest volume of keeping love alive chip reveals a humbling truth every marriage has its challenges even the ones that look perfect so how can you get your relationship where it needs to be we'll join chip as he shares profound biblical truths that will help you and your mate tackle these hurdles together and build a stronger christ-centered marriage for more information about keeping love alive volume 3 or our series resources go to Living on the Edge org or call triple 8 3 3 3 6 0 0 3 that's triple 8 3 3 3 6 0 0 3 or Living on the Edge org app listeners tap special offers before we go any further chip i can see you're wanting to jump in here and talk about a really helpful resource we have for couples that'll completely transform their relationships would you talk about that you know dave marriage is a uh is a unique experience and i don't mean to make light of this but you know we all have cars and i have noticed that people most of us are better at keeping our cars in shape than we are the most important relationship i mean you know i have this little light that comes on it says hey you need a tune-up right you gotta align the wheel change the oil you know check the tires and and you know you do that and if you do that your car runs really well for a long time and what i want to remind people is that our marriages need a tune-up it doesn't mean anything's wrong it just means hey how's the communication going and where we at in this season of marriage and left to ourselves work pulls us in directions children pull us in directions and just to pause and say let's give some real energy and focus to our marriage and i found the very best way to do that is to find two or three couples and say hey let's do a study together and the study that we have that for me is the absolutely most practical is called experiencing god's dream for your marriage it's a resource that talks about communication resolving conflict fighting fair i mean all the kind of things that we all need tune-ups on experiencing god's dream for your marriage has been just one of the best small group resources we ever created so dave why don't you tell people how they can get that and let me just encourage you to check it out thanks chip well whether you're a newlywed or have been married for years this resource will make a significant difference in your relationship you're going to be blown away by how much you'll learn about your spouse just by investing some time in this study so let me encourage you order the small group guide or the dvd and get ready to enjoy your relationship the way god intended for complete details on experiencing god's dream for your marriage go to Living on the Edge dot org or call 888-333-6003 that's 888-333-6003 or visit Living on the Edge dot org app listeners tap special offers chip i think every mom and dad listening would agree that parenting is hard but it just seems like over the past couple years it's gone to a whole new level and you touched on some of those changes today so could you give us a quick recap of what you taught and then share some words of hope for that discouraged parent out there absolutely dave it has been a very very challenging time for everyone in their homes parenting kids i mean the explosion of devices kids at home no school i mean there's so many issues we can lose sight of what the big issues are you have to deal with those but i wanted to remind parents that effective parenting in this very defective world always begins with clear-cut objectives our culture has bombarded us with the goal to make your kids happy and you know what i want my kids to be happy and i actually have kids who grew up very happy but the whole entitlement the whole how do we revolve our whole world around our children has produced disastrous impact and what god says is the clear-cut objective help your child become like jesus in other words the goals that they would be loving and holy and other centered in a word it's about developing their character and their spiritual engagement with christ and that takes time and so we're living in a world where getting on the team sports or every activity is where parents spend their time and i i fear very deeply that they're not spending a whole lot of time and energy of saying how do i help my child grow in christ and so those are really really big challenges dave and that's why we've created a number of resources and coaching and then the next thing i would say is the critical key is having a relationship with your child that is deep and where you really bond because difficulties are coming and in our next broadcast i'm going to talk about the eight specific ways and activities where we bond with our kids and then i'm going to share what do you do as a parent when you blow it big time so don't miss our next broadcast well just before we close i want to thank those of you who regularly give to the ministry of Living on the Edge you're making a big difference in helping christians live like christians now if you're enjoying the benefits of Living on the Edge but aren't yet on the team would you do that today you can set up a recurring donation by calling us at triple eight three three three six zero zero three or by visiting us at Living on the Edge dot org app listeners tap donate thanks for doing whatever the lord leads you to do well for all of us here this is dave druy saying thanks for listening to this Edition of Living on the Edge
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-05-14 12:42:55 / 2023-05-14 12:53:56 / 11

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