With Mother’s Day around the corner, Leslie shares practical encouragement for moms raising children or any woman looking to gain vision for Christ-centered child rearing. Applicable for any woman who has influence in the life of a child, Leslie shares how to reach the souls of children by modeling the Gospel in your own life, how to watch over the ways of your home, why it’s important to identify the spiritual root of your child’s behavior patterns, and more in this week’s episode!
Studies have shown that large numbers of children who have grown up in Christian homes leave the faith by the time they are in college. In my years of ministry, I have found that it’s actually very common for teenagers and 20-year-olds to struggle with doubt, habitual sin, frustration, and defeat in their spiritual walk. In mainstream Christianity it’s normal for children to be given the mechanics of Christianity but lack the engine or fuel to make their faith functional in their everyday lives.
Do you long to see your children rise above this sobering statistic? The difference can be found in truly discipling your children to have a personal relationship with Christ — not just a set of rules or religious standards that have a form of godliness but no true Gospel-power to save them from sin, root them in Truth, and make them able to stand up to the pressures of this world.
As mothers or those who have spiritual oversight over the lives of little ones, we have been given the sacred task of leading our children closer to Christ. After a child makes a confession of faith, they need to be trained, discipled, and taught how to practically walk out that which they believe. The following practicals will give you starting points in how to incorporate discipleship into your day-to-day routine.
Practical Ways to Reach the Souls of Your Children
+ Live It Out
Many times, as parents, we over-teach and under-model. Our words of instruction are merely the icing on the cake and a reinforcement to what children should be seeing us live out each and every day. Romans 2:21 gives a poignant challenge to any parent (or anyone who is discipling children) reminding us that we must maintain a spiritual sharpness in our personal lives in order to effectively model Christlike behavior to our own. Everything we expect our children to live, we should also be incorporating into our own lives consistently.
Seek to cultivate a daily, passionate relationship with Christ and then lead your children to model that same discipline in their own life. Rather than focusing on the mechanics, seek to instill a heart for God and a deep love for the things of His Word.
+ Tackle Spiritual Issues
When children demonstrate ungodly behavior, it’s important to deal with those issues head-on, not merely from a behavioral viewpoint, but using spiritual understanding to pinpoint the root issue for the problem your child is dealing with. Correcting behavior will only deal with the surface issue, but correcting the heart of the matter will lead to lasting life-change.
A powerful way to help your child with a behavioral issue is to remind your child of his/her position in Christ and the power that they have over sin after they have made a profession of faith in having a personal relationship with Jesus. Children aren’t “too young” to understand spiritual matters and can learn the basic principle of reckoning truth and their position in Christ. As children grasp their position in Christ, you will see an incredible difference in how they live. This is applying the Gospel to all of the struggles they face!
+ Lead Them to Know Jesus
It’s easy to teach about Jesus but fail to build a daily, personal relationship with Him. Children will remain rooted in Christ when they are led to a relationship with Him, rather than adhering to a moral set of rules.
One way to do this is to help your child facilitate a daily quiet time. While this will look different at each stage of your child’s life, seek to find creative ways to lead them to seek Jesus. Remember, a relationship with Christ is the ultimate goal for our children to grasp.
+ Be Watchful
Women are instructed to be keepers of their homes, and, in its truest sense, that means that women are to be vigilant watchmen, like those standing ready and in position watching over the entryways of their home and the hearts of their children to deliver a knock-out blow to the enemy if he should try to leverage anything against them.
Be watchful over what influences, friends, entertainment, media choices, etc. enter into the doors of your home. In order to be watchful, we must remain spiritually sharp and focused by maintaining our relationship with Jesus Christ and tuning out noises and distractions so that you can tune in to your children. We won’t notice unhealthy influences if we are entangled in our own distractions, and we can’t watch over the ways of our house if we’re not watching over the gates of our own soul.
Remember that God has specifically called, equipped, and anointed you to spiritually disciple your children. If you surrender to Him, He will provide you with all of the wisdom, creativity, and diligence you need in order to point your children’s heart to Him.
As we near Mother’s Day, don’t just think about ways you can be appreciated for all that you do for your children, think of ways you can become more excellent in watching over the ways of your home and leading your children towards Christ.
2 Timothy 2:4
To gain a deeper understanding and firmer grasp of your position in Christ, stream Eric Ludy’s sermons for free here.