What It’s All About
September 15, 2011 by dkevinbrown
Take a look at these pictures…it’s what it’s all about to me…
This is Carson Parrish’s baptism. I had the privilege of baptizing Carson about 3 weeks ago. What a joy!
What’s so joyful about it? I’ll tell you… Carson’s family led him to Christ. Carson’s mom, Melanie, led him to Jesus. She prayed with Carson, but the truth is that the entire family was involved in the process and that’s how it should be. With Dan (the father) and Melanie, they see it as their responsibility to lead their family to Christ. Dan, particularly as the father sees this as his primary responsibility. I appreciate families like the Parrishes. They “get it.”
Get what? They get it that they must orchestrate their home life to present Jesus as Lord. Now I’m not trying to put this family on a pedestal. I’m simply saying that they are attempting to train and teach their children about Christ. I call it “Rite of Passage” living. It’s why I wrote my book on the subject (Rite of Passage).
We must structure and organize our homes so that we can pass our children through to adulthood as Christ-centered young adults. It’s wonderful to see families making this happen in their homes.
As I think about our children, I’ve come to the conclusion that the problem is that as modern American parents we have come to
believe the idea that children will eventually reach maturity by themselves, and little input from us as parents is needed. Rather than making maturity our primary goal for them, we substitute as a goal — a happy and fulfilling childhood. We don’t mean to, but we do. Therefore, from the time our children are born, we feed their desire for self-indulgence (this is called existentialism) and accidentally keep them from maturing.
Unfortunately, by the time they reach their teen years they are just like the other “normal” self-involved teenagers whose parents also made a fun childhood the chief goal. After all…we just want them to have it better than we did, right? What’s wrong with that? So what do we have in America? We have gratification-oriented people. And it’s not just the teenagers. It’s all of us! Just look at Washington!
We have grown to think that this immature, self-absorption (having to be entertained mentality) is just a fad or stage of growing up. We don’t realize this phenomena is unique to this century, and is unique to only a few affluent nations of the world. So, parents expect it and accept it. Therefore, most children don’t grow to be mature. Although most of us as parents love our children, our commitment to their happiness unintentionally harms them. Indulged children are unprepared for adulthood.
They have been sent the message that their personal happiness is of supreme importance, so they grow up thinking it is owed them. They ultimately lack the self-discipline necessary for successful employment, and their self-centeredness will cause strife in their marriages. And when their marriages fail, they will not consider it their fault — they will see themselves as innocent “victims” of their spouse’s shortcomings or may even blame us (their parents).
From the time they are young, our children must learn that life is not about fun and entertainment, nor is it about personal
happiness and self-gratification. It is about responsibility and serving others (as Christians that’s the goal, right…serving others).
It’s about finding joy in honoring God and loving our neighbors and serving.
Those of us who have lived at least 25 years have learned that life is hard, things don’t always go our way, we don’t always get what we want in life. Our children must be prepared for the challenges they will face in life. They must learn that they can’t have
everything they want, and that they can endure quite well with less than they hoped for. To mature properly, children must learn while they are still toddlers to obey their parents quickly and without resistance, and to endure hard situations humbly without temper tantrums and complaining. Those should NOT be allowed.With our help, we are teach what Christ teaches all…”to die to ourselves.” Otherwise, as adults, they will remain self-consumed, rebellious, and far from God. May we as parents be faithful to do what is right. It takes a ton of work and time…but, it can be done!