I want my kids to sin. Or more accurately, I know my kids will sin and I want them to teach them gospel of grace, repentance, and the power of forgiveness. I want them to know that conviction draws us closer to God and condemnation pushes us away from Him. I want them to know that when they make mistakes they have a safe place to fall. I will do as my parents did, refusing to shame them and instead teaching them God’s word, loving them unconditional, and guiding them through the minefields of this world.
I refuse to parent with the goal of my kids saying all the right things at all the right times. My goal is for them to be authentic, even when it’s uncomfortable. My goal is to raise adults who surrender their hearts to Jesus every day. My goal is inward transformation that may look messy and unpredictable along the way.
I’m not sure what happens when we become parents, but sometimes it’s really ugly. Our expectations are ridiculously high. We want them to be polite—every time. We want them to be kind—every time. We want them to obey—the first time, every time. And what if they are tired, angry, sad, hurting, or just plain sinful? Well there’s just no room for that.
The apostle Paul speaks to the struggle against our sinful nature in Romans saying:
Our stellar parenting doesn’t free our kids from sin: Jesus does. -Angela Howard Click To Tweet
15 I don’t really understand myself, for I want to do what is right, but I don’t do it. Instead, I do what I hate…18 And I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my sinful nature. I want to do what is right, but I can’t. 19 I want to do what is good, but I don’t. I don’t want to do what is wrong, but I do it anyway…24 Oh, what a miserable person I am! Who will free me from this life that is dominated by sin and death? 25 Thank God! The answer is in Jesus Christ our Lord. Romans 7:15-25 (NLT) Read the full passage HERE.
Our stellar parenting doesn’t free our kids from sin: Jesus does. So to that end, I make the following commitments in prayer to my Savior, and I hope you will join me:
A Prayer and Commitment
Lord, you are the answer for my children. You are the only one who can free them from a life dominated by sin. You are the only one who can win their hearts so that they will surrender their lives each day to you. As their parent, I commit to point them your Word, your unchanging character and your love. I commit to honor their strengths, instead of focusing on their weaknesses. I commit to pray for their hearts, instead of focusing on their choice of hair style. I commit to teaching them more by what do, than what I say. Help me to remember that I am a sinner and need your grace and mercy. Show me how to model repentance, mercy, and redemption. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
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