Paul sees children as responsible members of the church community as they hear, digest, and respond to the ways of Jesus. He makes the connection that to obey a parent is to obey Jesus. This can be difficult when a child believes their parent is being unreasonable, doesn’t make sense, or simply doesn’t want to do what their parent is asking. Yet, parents have a sacred and profound mission to capture the heart of a child to motivate, inspire, and empower them to follow Jesus through obedience.
As Pastor Manion has said, “You’re not raising children, you’re raising adults.” Your child is a future employee, spouse, and parent. Likewise, Paul emphasizes the home is critical training ground for following Jesus. The Lord will ask your children to do things they do not want to do, things that do not make sense, and things with which they may not agree.
A child who learns to submit to the Lord in the home will unlock significant spiritual movement in their life. They’ll also cultivate the understanding that our obedience is never contingent on the actions of others, but on the sacrificial practice of pleasing the Lord.
It’s never too late to invest in your children. This evening, take some time at your dinner table to start a conversation with your child. Ask them what they find difficult as it relates to obeying you and why God cares.