I have been a parent for 20 years now, which is hard for me to fathom even as I am writing this. As the saying goes for parenting, “the days pass slowly, but the years fly by.” I want to share some vision with you as a parent of young children. Also, as you look to the future hopes and dreams you have for your children, consider making a short list with your spouse (if you are married) of the priorities you have for your children’s futures.
My wife, Heidi, and I made a commitment years ago that our number one goal for our children was they would put their faith in Jesus and have their own relationship with Him. We faced many trials and challenges with our kids in both the elementary and teen years, but we have never stopped praying for them, pursuing their hearts and pointing them to Jesus.
Priorities For Parents
I had a conversation the other day with a Christian brother who has younger children. He asked me what our plans are for our kid’s college education. I told him we aren’t against our children going to college, but we are most concerned about helping them seek God as they take their first steps away from home. You will read a devotion in the upcoming Jesus Family Worship Guide written by our oldest son, Ben, about his experience with an organization called Youth With a Mission (YWAM). We chose YWAM over college because we believed that was the best way for our son to further his relationship with the Lord. We had many friends and family members question our decision, but we are confident we are on the right path. My wife and I knew if our children continually walk with Jesus, we can trust that He has plans for them and He will take care of them.
I am not against college, in fact both my wife and I graduated from college. However, I do get concerned when I talk to Christian parents and they assume college is God’s plan for their kids life. Our culture has so ingrained in our minds that ‘good parents’ send their kids to college, we almost don’t consider or even pray about anything else. I am encouraging all parents to not assume what God has for our kids, but let’s ask Him first. If it is college, joyfully send you kids and if it something else, joyfully send them to that. But let’s allow God to be the Lord of our family and allow Him to direct our steps.
Encouragement Towards Parents
In closing, I want to encourage you to pursue a genuine relationship with your children. Spend time and invest in them heavily. Share your faith with them and don’t be afraid if your family looks different than many other friends and family members. We are Christian parents and are called first and foremost to be God’s instruments to help our children trust and follow Jesus.
[Thanks for reading the blog today! I would love to hear your thoughts below…]