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House or Home - Parenting Edition - Is There a Parent in the House?, Part 1

Living on the Edge / Chip Ingram
The Truth Network Radio
April 22, 2024 6:00 am

House or Home - Parenting Edition - Is There a Parent in the House?, Part 1

Living on the Edge / Chip Ingram

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April 22, 2024 6:00 am

We all long to be good parents. We want to see our children grow up to be godly, responsible, loving people. But the fact is that for most of us the joy of parenting is mixed with a strong dose of frustration, guilt, and anxiety. Would you like to know how to raise your kids without regrets and find joy in the process? If so, join Chip as he begins this series: House or Home: God’s Blueprint for Biblical Parenting.

Main Points

Four snapshots of a godly parent:

  1. Godly parenting begins with positive, clear-cut, objectives! - Ephesians 6:4
  2. Godly parenting demands we practice what we preach. - 1 Corinthians 4:
  3. Godly parents build relationships that bond. - 1 Thessalonians 2:7-8, 11-12
  4. Godly parenting requires constant repair and ongoing maintenance. - 1 John 1:9
Broadcast Resource Additional Resource Mentions About Chip Ingram

Chip Ingram’s passion is helping Christians really live like Christians. As a pastor, author, and teacher for more than three decades, Chip has helped believers around the world move from spiritual spectators to healthy, authentic disciples of Jesus by living out God’s truth in their lives and relationships in transformational ways.

About Living on the Edge

Living on the Edge exists to help Christians live like Christians. Established in 1995 as the radio ministry of pastor and author Chip Ingram, God has since grown it into a global discipleship ministry. Living on the Edge provides Biblical teaching and discipleship resources that challenge and equip spiritually hungry Christians all over the world to become mature disciples of Jesus.

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We all long to be good parents. We want to see our kids grow up to be godly, responsible, loving people. But the fact is, most of us, with the joy of parenting, have a strong dose of frustration, guilt, and anxiety.

Would you like to learn how to raise kids without regrets and find the real joy in the process? Well, that's today. Welcome to this Edition of Living on the Edge with Chip Ingram. The mission of these daily programs is to intentionally disciple Christians through the Bible teaching of Chip Ingram.

And in just a minute, we'll begin his series, House or Home? Parenting Edition. For the next several programs, Chip will pass along some valuable and memorable advice for moms and dads to raise godly kids, reduce stress in the home, and have a well-adjusted family life. Well, there's a lot of helpful content to get to, so go in your Bible now to Ephesians chapter 6. As Chip kicks off his series with his talk, is there a parent in the house? So we're going to talk about God's agenda and God's blueprint for being the kind of parent that he wants you to be. And it's going to be challenging.

It's going to be wonderful. And what I can tell you is, it's not theory. And I like to say that I came from this amazing home where my father and his father and his great-grandfather were all pastors or godly lay people and they knew God and I grew up with, you know, someone putting me on their knee and reading me Bible stories. My parents weren't Christians when I grew up and my dad was an alcoholic. And so I'd like to say I married a girl that came from this amazing home but I can't.

Her father was an alcoholic. So what you have is a pretty dysfunctional group of people coming together that don't have a clue about how to be parents, which ought to give you a lot of hope right now. The other thing is, you need to know this up front, is when I met my wife, because she went through some tragic situations, not of her doing, I met her and she had these two little kids that were about two years old. And because she had two little kids that were two years old, it took me about two and a half years to figure out she was really God's will.

Because the idea of marrying her was one thing, becoming an instant father was something else. So when we're talking about single parents, we know what we're talking about. When we're talking about a blended family, I know what I'm talking about. And when you're talking about coming from two dysfunctional families, I can tell you, what I'm going to share with you is not theory or something that ought to happen someday, someway. What we have done with our kids very imperfectly is we've realized unless God shows up and gives us supernatural power, unless we follow God's blueprint and His word, unless we get people that walk with God much better than us and learn from them, and then as imperfectly as we followed, we really sought to follow God's blueprint.

And all I can tell you about the grace of God, I've got four kids that passionately walk with Christ, all involved in ministries either as lay people or vocationally. And you know, Teresa and I sometimes we pinch each other and we think, because I mean, we so struggled. And we had one that went through a real season of rebellion. And we, you know, we have four. So we have, every time there was always some big problem. I mean, I can't remember hardly, you know, like maybe there's a couple hours, all four kids are doing great.

Right? And we wanted to make sure we did it. This is, I'm sure God's plan that is a very clear evaluation test. What we did is we, that we had the kids like every six years apart and made sure we had 13 years between the youngest and the old.

So that as we were learning we kept passing it on. Really it was a babysitting plan. So when one was born the other 13, you know, we're kind of rolling on that one.

But what I really want to tell you is listen very carefully. The greatest joys you'll ever experience on this planet will have to do with your children. The greatest sorrows you'll ever experience on this planet will have to do with your children. The most precious gift and possession that God will ever entrust to you are your children. And the greatest responsibility and potential for legacy and impact are your children. So let's jump in together and let's get God's perspective on children, big picture, and then I want to give you what I think are the four overarching biblical axioms or principles about when God says, what's the blueprint for raising kids that fulfill my agenda, that bring you joy, and allow them to respond to me in the way I want them to? Those are the four things we're going to cover.

You ready? Your kids matter to God. Listen to what he says in Psalm 137, 3 through 5. Behold, children are a gift of the Lord. Circle the word gift. The fruit of the womb is a reward.

Circle the word reward. Some days they don't feel like a gift and some days they do not feel like a reward. But they're like arrows in the hand of a warrior.

So are children of one's youth. How blessed is the man whose quiver is full of them. They shall not be ashamed when they speak with their enemies in the gates. Notice an arrow is something that's to be launched and sent. An arrow needs a clear target. An arrow needs preparation. God's will for your kids is not just they're sweet and perfect and happy and everything comes out right.

Arrows have purpose. God has a purpose for your daughters and a purpose for your son. He has entrusted them to you temporarily and they are a gift and they're his and they're a reward and your job is to discern what is the target and how does this arrow need to be shaped and how do you release this arrow not so everything turns out the way you want it to but so that arrow hits the target that a sovereign all-wise all-knowing loving God has for your son or daughter because the greatest joy they will ever experience is being in the center of his will.

You can't do that for him but you create that environment. Notice what the scripture says, instructions to parents. This is the key New Testament passage.

We'll come back to it often. Children, obey your parents. By the way, when you think about what you need to help your kids learn, it's the only one command in all of the New Testament that kids have. Obey your parents.

So I'll flip it around. How serious are you about helping them learn to obey? Notice he goes on to say, for this is right and then he reaches back into the Ten Commandments. Commandment number five, honor your father and mother which is the first commandment with the promise that it may be well with you and that you may live long on the earth. And fathers, do not provoke your children to anger but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord. And so the summary we have is children are a gift from God, a sacred stewardship temporarily entrusted to parents for the purpose of raising godly offspring to fulfill God's agenda for his world.

That's a very long purposeful statement. A gift. Stewardship.

Temporary. They're not yours. This issue that how they turn out reflects so much on you. Christian parents especially take way too much responsibility for when their kids don't turn out right and take almost no responsibility when they turn out well. You talk to Christian parents and if their kids turn out well it was all the Lord, of course it was all the Lord but you had a part. But it's really funny then you get two or three that make great decisions and they have little choosers and one of them makes some really bad decisions and I've been with parents that for 20 years I'm a failure.

I blew it. It's all my fault. Well how can it be all your fault if it all goes wrong but it's all God if it all goes right?

See that kind of thinking is really not very good thinking. You as a parent are a steward. You create an environment where your children can learn and grow and respond to God. What choices they make you know what they are? They're choices and sometimes at 14 or 16 or 18 or 20 or 23 they make some very foolish sinful stupid choices. Now if you haven't taught them anything and you've been neglectful and you haven't modeled the things that would help them make good choices then you need to ask God to forgive you and repent. But if to the best of your ability you've done all that you can to create that kind of environment and they make some of those choices you need to understand I'm a steward.

I need to own anything that I've done that I know was wrong and then I need to release that child and realize you know something they need to learn to feel the weight of the consequences and you not own everything that goes wrong in your kids lives. I've met people that their life stops. Everything is wrong. Everything is bad because somehow anything that happens with their kids was all their fault. I got news for you.

You're just not that big and you're not that important. And so we need to understand there are kids. We're going to love them like crazy. We're going to walk with God and set a great example. We're going to create an environment. We're going to be disciplined.

We're going to give them tough love and we're going to give them tender love. But at the end of the day they're going to make some decisions and what you want to do you parent differently when you understand I'm going to help them learn to experience some consequences to help them make great decisions and to follow heart after Christ. But there are no guarantees.

There is no formula. There is no if you do A, B, C, and D all your kids turn out a certain way. And so let's get really clear on that. Now let's ask well what is that environment?

How do you do it? Four biblical principles to become godly parents. Number one. Godly parents begin with positive clear cut objectives. Positive clear cut objectives. You might put an arrow in your notes and write the word target. As one of my old coaches said if you don't have a target you hit it every time.

Because it can go anywhere. Godly parents start with a positive clear cut objective. In the Phillips translation notice what it says in Ephesians 6 4. Fathers, negative command. Don't over correct your children or exasperate them. Or make it difficult for them to obey the command. Then notice the positive command. Bring them up with Christian teaching and Christian discipline.

Put a line under Christian teaching and Christian discipline. Negative command is don't exasperate them. Don't be perfectionistic.

Don't compare them with their brothers. Don't say you ought to do this. Don't ask a C student to get all A's. Don't demand that because you love sports they should love sports. Don't demand that they ought to be musical because you just think musical is really important. Don't exasperate your kids. Don't demand that every little thing is right all the time. Don't scream and yell and intimidate them and discipline out of anger. There's a lot of different ways that we exasperate our children and make it hard for them to obey.

But by contrast bring them up. The word literally is nurture. In classical Greek literature this word bring them up meant the physical development of a child.

Kind of the, I mean how do you make them strong physically. In later Greek literature this word came to mean the total education of a child. The spiritual, moral, physical development of the child.

By the time we get to coin A Greek it had to do with the total development of everything. So how do you bring up or nurture, train, develop and educate your child to fulfill or become mature of their absolute highest potential. That's what he's saying. That's your job.

You're listening to Living on the Edge with Chip Ingram. We'll get you back to our series House or Home parodying edition in just a minute. But first if this teaching has ministered to you consider becoming a monthly partner. Your regular financial support goes a long way to help us encourage pastors, create resources and share Jesus with today's youth.

Visit livingontheedge.org today to learn how to support us. Well with that here again is Chip. And so what he says then after this is how to do it. Christian teaching and Christian discipline.

We'll get into this a bit later. Christian teaching is what you say to your kids. Discipline is what you do.

Those are the two kind of things that you have to help your kids. There's certain things you say. There's certain things you do.

Our problem normally is we flip-flopped in the wrong time. When they're very small we say, say, say, say too much. We've got a two-year-old. Okay. Now, Bobby. Yes, Dad. You need to understand when you don't listen to me, according to scripture, according to the Lapsarian theory and the cause and consequence of sowing and reaping, you need to understand.

And this little kid's going, you know, all you need to tell him is, Bobby, when I say pick up your toys, pick them up. Why? I said so. That's why. Because all you need to do is obey. Bobby's a teenager. Hey, I want to go to this movie.

I want to do this with my friends. I don't understand. Hey, Dad, give me a break, will you?

How come I can't? I said so. Not a good answer.

When they're a teenager, you want to talk. Here's the why. Here's the what for. Here's the reasoning.

Why do you think you should do that? When they're small, what you want to do is set the guardrails by your actions and your consequences. They can't think developmentally. They can't think abstractly.

They're very concrete. And what you're going to learn all throughout the process when they're young, preteens, teenagers, and older, is these two tools are in your bag. Certain things you're going to say, certain things you're going to do. And he says that's how you bring them up in the nurture.

I call this the principle of focus. The greatest thing I see parents do and been there, done that, is parenting out of fear instead of parenting out of focus. I'm afraid that this is going to happen. I'm afraid they're going to get behind. I'm afraid my two-year-old's not on the soccer team yet.

I'm sure he's going to. So you got all these three-year-olds doing this, you know. Fifteen of them with one ball. One kid over there really having fun, you know, picking grass, throwing it up in the middle, you know. And then on the baseball end, the guy's twirling his glove. He's four years old. He doesn't want to be there, but it's a new uniform.

And if you breathe, you do get a trophy now, because we're going to help everybody's self-esteem. Right? And so what we have is whole families spending entire weekends, okay, we go to the softball here, and then we go to the soccer practice here, or we get a nine-year-old, a seven-year-old, and an 11-year-old. I want to be a good parent. Being a good parent is not figuring out how to drive yourself crazy every weekend in SUVs and minivans, taking kids to multiple things that they actually don't want to go to often and are not ready for, but because all the other parents are doing it.

And what's the motivation? I'm afraid my kid will get left behind. I'm afraid they won't develop. I'm afraid of what the other parents might think.

So you've got a parent out of focus. What's the goal? God's dream or the world's dream?

I call it the American dream. God's dream, under that in your notes, write the word, Romans 8.29. We often quote Romans 8.28, don't we?

You know how God works all things together for the good, for those that love Him, that are called according to His purpose. So we can know that difficult situations, world tragedies, I mean all kind of issues, we know a sovereign, all wise, powerful God is going to work all things together for good, and we quote that. Verse 29 tells us for what? He says, in order to conform us to the image of His Son. In essence, God's primary agenda for your daughter or your son is to make Him like Christ.

The Bible calls that being holy, not holy as in weird, not holy as in they will have big black Bibles, not holy as in you have to have bumper stickers on your car, not holy as you are really weird and can't relate to normal people, holy as being morally pure and different or distinct and being like Christ, loving other people the way Christ did, caring for people the way Christ did, having the heart, the character and the love of Christ. That's God's agenda for your son. That's the number one thing He's trying to get done.

And you know what? Whether He can hit a ball or not, play an instrument or not, has a high SAT score or not, gets into an Ivy League school or not, is more upwardly mobile than you or not, that's the agenda. But the American dream, the world's dream really, is we've been bombarded with thoughts to say, you know what? Success as a parent is. Your kid makes first team.

Now forget first team, make the traveling team because it costs more money when you get to travel and usually miss church. And they need to be in the best schools and the best opportunities and have the good life and be upwardly mobile and be more secure. And they need to achieve. They need to have more status. I don't know how many times I've heard parents say, I don't want my kids to go through what I went through.

That's an interesting statement. I've heard parents say that who have really great character, who are very godly. And I'm thinking, so what is it you don't want them to go through? No pain, no suffering, no difficulty, no conflict in relationships.

Oh, you know what? I'm just betting those are all the things that made you who you are. See what happens is generation number one discovers Christ, loves him, has a radical transformation, begins to walk with God. When you begin to walk with God, you prioritize your money, you prioritize your time, you discover your spiritual gifts, you get in the biblical community and guess all that does? It causes God's blessing. And God's blessing usually has some side benefits like personal peace. Usually he blesses a lot of other areas of your life.

He often promotes you in ways and you become more financially comfortable. So generation number two comes and doesn't go through all that pain. And so generation two thinks, wow, mom and dad took care of this and this is good and this is good.

And you have a conviction. They have sort of a comfortable believing consciousness of Christ. And then the next generation often is either rejecting Christ or lukewarm at best. And a lot of it is the very thing that brings success, all these parents are trying to keep your kids from going through difficulty, keep them from going through pain.

Those are the things, that's how you got close to God. Now you don't have to create these situations, but you need to understand, don't parent out of fear. Don't parent out of your kids getting in a difficult situation. We isolate them.

We've isolated them in ways where the only people they're ever around at times are Christians. Any time I've watched parents when there's a little conflict starting, oh Russia and you say sorry. I mean, my lance, let them fight a little bit. You know what? A smart Alec kid that keeps messing with people, some bigger kid is going to help him learn how to not mess with people.

But you can't get that anymore. Stop, stop, stop, stop. And a lot of it is, you know what the parent says? It makes me look bad as a parent. My child is not perfectly behaved. None of mine were. And I have no idea what they did when I wasn't around. But you need to parent out of focus, not parent out of fear.

One focuses on character and the other is on circumstance. And I will tell you, especially some of you that God is blessed and are upwardly mobile, there's a whole generation of younger parents that feel this invisible demand to have your kid involved in everything and be successful. I just came back from an overseas trip where some very, very strong Christian people in Korea and Hong Kong, I mean it's like a tutor for six or seven hours every Saturday.

So the SAT scores are up here so they can get an Ivy League school. And I was with a man and his wife and we were talking about priorities and family and he's a CEO of one of the largest companies there in Korea. I was asking him about his family and I did a retreat for them and as we were talking I said, your wife asked me a question that was really hard to handle in front of a group of people.

I need to ask you about it. And he goes, yeah. I said, your wife, you know you have a son that got all these great grades and got into an Ivy League school and got the multiple degrees and he lives now in New York and has a very good job and is making a lot of money and he's the picture of success, correct?

Yes. Well, your wife asked in front of those other CEOs at the table, what, she asked me, what should I tell my son who told me if being a Christian is being a Christian like my father, I don't want to be one. We were driving in the car going home and she said, you know what, he taught at the Wharton School of Finance for 10 or 12 years. Later he was asked to come back to Korea and taught there at a major university and then appointed to a very high government position.

And because of that, and the culture is just workaholism at levels that even I, having been there and done that, could not fathom. And she went out and bought furniture for the family and one Saturday after they'd been there about two or three years, they were sitting down to have breakfast together and they realized they only had three chairs. And it didn't even dawn on her, they only had three chairs because they never expected the father to ever be there at breakfast or at dinner.

And they just had this moment. Now what I got to tell you is this couple, what they're doing in their marriage, what they're doing with their kids, how they're leading this group of CEOs and saying, you know something, we Koreans are really zealous but we're exporting a kind of family that is not honoring to Christ. And I guess what I'd ask you is what's yours look like? Is yours focused a lot on your kids being successful or is it on them being holy?

And by the way, it's not an either or. Don't get me wrong, I don't think every youth sport is wrong or you know music lessons, all the rest, but I'm just saying the average parent is spending an ordinate amount of time, money, energy and focus so that your kids will be successful. And now what I want you to tell me is what's your game plan and how focused are you in helping them become holy?

Because they get to be 13, 14, 15, if they've been on the success deal, it's hard to pull that string back in, isn't it? Second timeless principle is godly parenting demands, we practice what we preach. We practice what we preach. See, here's the deal, it's the principle of modeling, we must be what we want our children to become.

And if you want a great picture, imagine if you would sort of a nice big sofa, if you only have a couple kids, it could be a love seat. And I want you to go through this thing where you bend over and look into the eyes of all your children and we'll put them right here on this invisible couch and say, since I know this is true, here's what. I want you to tell the truth exactly like you see mommy or daddy tell the truth. I want you to drive the car just the way, like when the law says, you know, with the phone and all that, you just do it the way I do it. If I text, you text, okay? I want you to be as generous with your money and obey God's word exactly like I do.

When I get really upset and angry and you hear me scream or yell or be passive or withdrawal, I want you to do it exactly like that. And here parents, here's the deal. And this may be worth our entire time coming together. The biggest thing you'll ever do is not something you do with your kids.

It's who you are. This is Living on the Edge with Chip Ingram. And you've been listening to part one of Chip's message. Is there a parent in the house from our series house or home parenting edition. Chip will be back shortly to share some helpful application for us to think about. Are you an overwhelmed or discouraged parent, desperate for practical wisdom and guidance in raising your kids? Well, if that's you, Chip's got your back. He'll equip moms and dads with God's blueprint for parenting.

With a little courage and intentionality, you'll discover how to better communicate with your kids, reduce stress in your home and have a joy-filled family. You're not going to want to miss a word of this insightful series. Well, Chip's in studio with me now. And Chip, we're just diving into this study.

Take a minute, if you would, and tell the listeners your purpose for this series and what they'll learn from it. Well, Dave, I am super excited because I'm not sure if there's been a more challenging time to raise children than right now. And especially in the Christian community where some of the values and things that you want to help your kids learn are fairly antithetical as the culture becomes less and less Christian, if you will. And so we're going to help parents create safe, nurturing environments that cause their kids' self-esteem to grow. We're also going to help them develop boundaries and discipline in a way that provides security for their kids. And we're going to give them some real tips and help and teaching on how to use technology and how to grasp some of the negative things that technology can bring. Even though it brings some short-term relief, we have to be very wise about those things. I just want you to know that everything begins with the family, and it's hard to be a parent. And we want to help parents be successful because as we raise our kids, they are the light and the salt of the world that goes out into the world. And it's a very tough job, and this series is going to help you.

Let's not just listen to this, but put it into practice. You will be so glad you did. Thanks, Chip. Well, I do hope you can join us for each message in this series. And because this content is so relevant to every family, invite a couple parent friends to listen too, either through the Chip Ingram app or at LivingOnTheEdge.org. We all could use some encouragement and guidance to be better God-honoring moms and dads.

Well, with that, here again is Chip to share a few final words for us to think about. As we close today's program, let me remind you of the first two points that positive parents have in common. Number one, they set clear-cut objectives, positive clear-cut objectives.

In other words, they get the right target. It's that my child will be holy, not necessarily happy all the time. The second thing parents do that make a real impact is they practice what they preach. Now, when I have taught this, I've done it live, I've done it in seminars, I've done it in different countries, and I can just tell you there's something about parents all around the world is they walk out of this session right at this point instead of thinking about, oh, this is what my kid needs to become or this is what I need to do to help my kid. I will tell you, almost without exception, parents have that look on their face with this reality that says, so you mean that my kids are going to turn out a lot like me.

And when I said they're going to drive like you, they're going to spend their money like you, they're going to watch what you watch. And so the application to really become the kind of parent you want to become and see your kids become who you really long for them to become probably isn't a skill or a technique with your kids. It's probably asking God, what one thing in your life do you want to make sure that you do not want to pass on? In other words, do you want to pass on a bitter spirit?

Is there someone you haven't forgiven? Do you want to pass on reckless spending? Do you want to pass on a history of debt? Do you want to pass on kind of being loose with what you allow to go in your mind? See, one of the most important things we need to grasp is that more is caught than taught.

And it's what you model. It's how you live that is going to be passed on to your children regardless of what you say. I want you to commit with me to go on a journey to be a Godly parent. And the first step is this assignment. Ask God, what one thing, and maybe it's even a little thing, maybe it's just an attitude, but what one thing does God want you to address so you can pass on something positive instead of negative to your child? Great challenge to wrap up this first program, Chip.

Thanks. Before we go, I want to thank each of you who makes this program possible through your generous giving. One hundred percent of your gifts go directly to the ministry to help Christians live like Christians. Now, if you found this teaching helpful but aren't yet on the team, consider doing that today.

Sending a gift is easy. Go to livingontheedge.org or call 888-333-6003. That's 888-333-6003 or visit livingontheedge.org. App listeners, tap donate, and let me thank you in advance for doing whatever the Lord leads you to do. Well, join us next time as Chip continues his series House or Home Parenting Edition. Until then, I'm Dave Druey thanking you for listening to this Edition of Living on the Edge.
Whisper: medium.en / 2024-04-22 04:07:26 / 2024-04-22 04:19:42 / 12

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