Did you know that almost 70% of students from Evangelical homes walk away from the faith five years after high school?
I mean, how is it possible to be raised in a Christian family, go to church, pray over meals, maybe even go to a Christian school, and then reject the faith? Well, that's what we're going to talk about today. This is important.
Stay with me. Thanks for listening to this Edition of Living on the Edge with Chip Ingram. Living on the Edge is an international discipleship ministry featuring the daily Bible teaching of Chip Ingram. I'm Dave Drewy, and in just a minute, Chip wraps up his short series, How to Raise a Healthy Family in a Modern World. For the past couple programs, we've been studying what God's Word says about building great relationships in our homes and how parents can create a strong Christian family in a society that's often opposed to biblical values. Now before we get started, if you missed any part of this series, let me encourage you to catch up via the Chip Ingram app.
It's a great way to listen anytime. All right, if you have a Bible handy, turn now to Psalm 127, and let's join Chip for part two of his message, How to Raise Godly Kids in an Ungodly World. What do you do when you blow it as a parent? What do you do when you blow it as a grandparent?
Here's what I can tell you. I had to learn over the years to, when they were small, to get down on one knee and look in their eye, really get their attention, sometimes grab their head, you know, and I would say their name, and then I would say, when you did this, I want you to know that you disobeyed me, and it made me very upset, or I chose to respond that way, and what you did was wrong, and I forgive you, but I want you to know that the way I talked to you, in fact, the way I yelled at you, God spoke to my heart, and he told me that was very wrong, and so will you forgive me, and we started that very, very early, and you know, it's an amazing thing to see a four-year-old kind of look at you and go, I forgive you. I said, oh, thank you, and then normally, I would sit down when they were small like this, and I'd have them climb into my lap and put my arm around them, and we would pray together, and actually, some of the times where I disciplined my children or I confessed my sin to my children were some of the precious times, and you know what they learned? They didn't learn their dad or their mom was perfect. What they learned was my heart's desire is I want to be holy and loving before my God.
I want the life of Christ lived out in me, and so that's my number one goal for me, my number one goal for them. What they learned was the role that I play is I want to be that example. I want to be that example doing the right thing, and I want to be that example when I don't do the right thing to own my stuff and to repent, and so they understand how to own their stuff because, right, sometimes our expectations are so unrealistic of our kids, aren't they? I mean, we look back at our childhood, and we did this and this and this and this, and then when our kids, what are you doing?
Principle of modeling. Someone has wisely said your children will come to a day where they will not do what you say, but when you look at your children by and large, they will become what you modeled. The little line that I've thought about many, many times has been I want to be, you might jot this down, what I want my kids to become, and it's never too late.
I mean, I've seen it happen where you've got 28, 30, 35-year-old kids, and you're sitting here thinking, you know, I wish I had this series or I would have applied this years ago. If you will be right where you're at in your stage of life what you want them to become, I will tell you the Spirit of God will begin working not just in you, but He'll work through you. So three questions have shaped our parenting. Question number one, what's your number one priority?
It's like my kids would be holy and walk with God. Question number two, what's my number one role? I have a lot of different roles, but number one role is I want to model a dependent, loving relationship on the living God and walking in holiness. The third question is what's my number one responsibility? You know, as a parent there's a lot of responsibilities, but what's number one? The apostle Paul would write to the church in Thessalonica, follow along, it's in your notes, just as a nursing mother cares for her children, so we cared for you because we loved you so much, we were delighted to share with you not only the gospel of God, but our lives as well. And then he goes on to say, for you know how we dealt with each of you as a father deals with his own children.
And how do fathers do it? Encouraging, comforting and urging you, what? To live lives worthy of God who calls you into his kingdom and glory. Now, did you notice the apostle Paul, he gives them two pictures. He said, how did we live among you? We lived among you like a caring, sensitive, nurturing mother. Those are the issues of the heart. And we lived among you as a father.
And he uses, I did a word study on those three words, those three words he says, we encouraged, we urged, we implored, the word comfort there is, it's a decent translation, but in essence he says, we did whatever it took, we would say it nicely, then we would bring up the intensity, and the final word is we brought whatever consequences necessary to help you learn. And so it's this picture, all of our kids need clear boundaries. That's what produces security. And all of our kids needs very, very tender hearts and lots of love.
And if you can imagine, you know, like there's this highway, and your kids are on this highway, and you're the parent, and you're kinda, when they're real small, you're real close to them, and pretty soon they get farther and farther away. But the one guardrail is, here's a boundary. You can never have your own selfish way. It's gonna be some tough love. And over here is a boundary.
There's nothing you can do. There's no action, there's no crime, there's nothing you can ever do to make me stop loving you. I will love you unconditionally, but I will not allow you to have your own selfish way. And you will find that you will be on this journey, and you will bounce back and forth, and there will be times where you will cry with your children, and you will love them and forgive them when they make horrendous mistakes, because they're human just like you.
And the arms of God will be your arms, and the eyes that weep with them will be your eyes. And there's other times where they'll be in mild or very strong rebellion, and you'll set some boundaries, and you know what, you're the worst person in the world, and they don't love you anymore, and they slam the door. And believe me, I've got four kids. We went through lots of ups and lots of downs, and any sense that you mistakenly have of my sweet wife and me, and we're the just loving, godly family, and all of our kids just turn out right, nothing could be farther from the truth. It was a battle. It was a journey. We went through difficult times. They're in the wrong relationship, seasons of rebellion, seasons where one of them just lied all the time, one that was so negative all the time, one that had no confidence. And each individual child, it was a journey.
There's not some formula that works for all of them. But here's my number one responsibility. My number one responsibility is to build the kind of relationship where they feel deeply, deeply loved, significant, and where they clearly know where the boundaries are, secure. See, that's what God does for us, and that's what God wants us to do for our children.
I call it the principle of relationship. Your values and beliefs. Now, these are not the values and beliefs that you say or that you on a test would say, oh yeah, God is important. Oh yeah, family's next. These are my values.
No, no, no. I'm talking about the ones you live. I'm talking about if I looked on your calendar, if I looked at your finances, if I could read your mind about your dreams, if I could hear the words that come out of your mouth, because see, that's what your kids get.
And the bridge. If you want them to have a heart for God, if you want them to walk in a manner that's worthy, if you want them to be caring for other people, if you want them to be people of integrity, here's what I'm gonna tell you. The stronger your relationship with them, and you know their heart, and to know their heart, then you need to understand that each kid is wired differently, so you become a student of every one of your children. There's one of my sons that if I raised my voice, he would feel crushed.
I had another son, I never did this by the way, but metaphorically, if I took a two by four and just went right across his head and it splintered, he would go like this and go, is that all you got? And they were just so different. I had one that was super sensitive. I had one that just wasn't sensitive at all. I had one that needed a lot of personal time.
One that doesn't want to talk deeply all the time. Each one of your children are uniquely made by God with a unique DNA, and what my job and your job is is to help them feel deeply, deeply loved and deeply, deeply secure. I've done a lot of research about what helps kids feel secure and loved, but here's eight things that build a relationship with your child where there's a bond, because here's what I want you to get. I mean, I've been through all this. They're going to have a crash in some area, probably morally. They're going to have a crash, some of them, in some addiction. They're going to have a crash where they're going to break up with someone.
They're going to have a crash where they're super disappointed. They're going to go through all kind of ups and downs, and here's the key. If there's this bridge that's built between you and them where they can come even when they've really blown it and be honest and share and know that no matter what, you still love them, but also know no matter what, you're going to be consistent and hold those boundaries and help them learn.
Here's eight ways to do that. Number one, express unconditional love, and by the way, I know we're doing better as a culture, but verbalize that, will you? I mean, these big grown boys of mine, you know how they end every phone conversation still? Love you, Dad.
Love you, Dad. Tell them, and then model that. Let them know that their performance is not what you value.
You value them, and a lot of that happens with the kind of words that you can say, not just you look pretty, external, or you got good grades, performance, or you're a really good athlete. I watched you in the game today, son. I thought the way you responded when they called a foul on you that didn't happen really impressed me.
Where am I going? See, you want to affirm character, and by the way, you know, you had a great game, 12 points, way to go. Second, scheduled time, and this is absolutely critical, scheduled time. In other words, it doesn't just happen, dinnertime. I mean, the research is amazing. In fact, there's websites now about the value of eating together.
Believers are unbelievers. Eat together. Scheduled time, bedtime.
Scheduled time as they get older, you go out for coffee or a smoothie or whatever you like, you know, every other week with each kid. Third, focused attention. No TV, no screens. By the way, when you're in the car, don't let everyone put in headphones and don't go on a trip and have screens going everywhere.
If you want a little bit of that, okay. They can't get away. They're in the car with you.
Maximize it. And it's okay if they roll their eyes. But talk, share, tell stories about your life. Tell them where you have fears.
Share your concerns. Create dialogue. Four is eye contact.
It's just all, it's powerful. When you talk, look into their eyes. Start very young. Look into their eyes. Let them know that you know that person inside of there really matters. The fifth is consistent communication. And whether you do that around the dinner table, whether that's going on on dates with your kids, but consistent communication, whether that's texting during the day, whether that's an email or you want to know what they think.
I had my kids read certain books and then I made them do a book report and I paid them for the book. I wanted to get good things in their mind and I wanted to communicate with them on a regular basis, especially for those of you that travel. I mean, get that FaceTime thing going.
Don't send the message that you're always busy, busy, busy, busy. Because no matter what you say, no matter how many gifts you bring from your trips, your kid's heart resonates when they know that you care and you communicate. Number six is meaningful touching. And this is, there's a reason why kids love to wrestle. I mean, they just love to be next to you. And so dads especially as your daughters are reaching adulthood and womanhood. You know, those 12, 13, 14 and they're coming of age, they need non-sexual hugs from a big strong man they trust and that's you.
Meaningful, touching, hugs to those boys. Seven is have fun together. I know I sound intense, but man, we had so much fun. We played games together. We played sports together.
We did crazy things together. Just have fun together. It's like oil to the whole family relationship. And finally, pray together and pray often. I just, I cannot tell you the power of how God draws our hearts together. If you're married and not a single parent, this is an important thing for you two to do together.
It starts out very uncomfortable but it will change your marriage. And then do that and not just per functor, you know, thank you for the food, amen. Heartfelt prayers. Pray about problems. Pause when something great happens.
Let's just thank God right now. And don't make it just always at church or around the table or, you know, right in the middle of in the car taking a walk. And by the way, you don't have to close your eyes. Did you notice that Jesus looked up to heaven and he prayed.
You can pray with eyes open. And just let your kids know that talking with God together is just the normal Christian life. Chip will be right back with his application for this message, How to Raise Godly Kids in an Ungodly World, from his series, How to Raise a Healthy Family in a Modern World. As many of us know, raising a family these days comes with lots of challenges. And raising a healthy Christian family is becoming increasingly more difficult to do.
So what hope do moms and dads have? Through this short series, Chip unpacks how parents can create a home that's built on love, respect, and most importantly, the Bible. Don't miss the ways you can establish a well-adjusted countercultural family that may look odd to some but truly honors God.
Now if you happen to miss any part of this series, the Chip Ingram app is a great way to catch up any time. Well, I'm joined in studio now by Chip. And Chip, today you talked about practical ways moms and dads can build relationships with their kids, to pass on their faith, and to defend them against dangerous ideas. So would you give some insight into what our kids and grandkids are facing and how Living on the Edge is trying to help?
I'd be glad to, Dave. You know, the world has changed a lot since I was a kid. Things that were once just normal aren't even viewed as tolerable anymore. And things that were once unheard of are becoming normal.
Here's the thing. Relative truth is a lie. The generation coming up is being taught that it's offensive to believe that evil is evil and good is good. The Bible is being falsely represented as hateful and destructive. And what is truly heartbreaking to me is that the truth of God's Word is where we find answers.
It's how to create reconciliation between divided parties and it's what provides help to hurting people in the world. You know, at Living on the Edge, we're committed to biblical teaching and discipleship and how to live out the actual truth that's revealed in Scripture. As a result, we're on a mission for the next generation, not just Generation Z and Gen Alpha, but the millennials and the young Gen Xers who are raising families of their own. There are so many of these generations who have distanced themselves from the church and from the Word of God. And we have to simply stand in the gap for these people that we care about and stop the cultural tidal wave that's washing away the faith of the next generation.
And here's my question. Will you join us? And right now is a great time to partner with us because every gift that you give from now through July 7th will be doubled dollar for dollar. Thanks so much for praying. Thanks for your gifts.
And thank you for allowing us to spread the truth of God's Word all across the world. Well, if you're already supporting us, thank you. Your gifts are helping us in profound ways.
But if you're still looking for a way to make a difference, let me suggest that you become a financial partner. And right now is a great time to join the team because thanks to a handful of donors, every gift we receive through July 7th will be doubled. To send a gift, call us at 888-333-6003. That's 888-333-6003. Or go to livingontheedge.org.
App listeners, tap donate. Well, Chip, as we wrap up the series, you've been pretty candid over the years about some of the struggles you and Teresa had in raising a family. So as you look back, what was the key to getting through those difficult times? Because let's be honest, ups and downs are a normal part of parenting.
Absolutely, Dave. There are going to be times, there's going to be days that you're going to have challenges with your children. They don't want to listen. They disobey. They get involved with the wrong crowd.
They make some bad decisions. But here's what you need to know. The stronger the relationship you build with your children, the better that truth will stick into their heart and the better they'll be able to hear it in days that are ahead when those storms come.
And so the eight things that we've talked about, let me encourage you, go to the website, download those notes, and then post those eight things and practice one each day. What I can tell you is that those storms will come. There's times when they listen more to their teenage friends than you. There's times when they go through their little rebellious times, even eight, nine, and ten years old. And there's times when you won't feel like loving them. But when you do these eight things regularly, what happens is your heart gets connected to their heart.
With great intentionality, I had these on a list and I practiced these because what I knew was when I feel my heart kind of disconnected, then I don't treat my kids the same way and they don't receive and feel my love. So let me encourage you, if you want to prepare for the dark days ahead, practice building a great relationship today. That's a very encouraging word, Chip.
Thanks. You'll find the message notes Chip mentioned in a couple of places. Go to livingontheedge.org and click the broadcasts tab. App listeners will find them by tapping fill in notes. You'll get Chip's outline, all of his scripture references, and lots of fill ins to help you remember what you're learning. So I hope you'll take advantage of this resource the next time you listen. Well, from all of us here, this is Dave Druey saying thanks for joining us for this Edition of Living on the Edge.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-04-05 21:55:36 / 2023-04-05 22:04:32 / 9