By Joey & Carla Link
September 9, 2020
I (Joey) grew up in a Bible teaching church with a good pastor. His kids became very good friends of mine. About 10 years later, he left his wife for another woman devastating her, his kids and the church. What eventually came out was his private life was very, very different from his public ministry. Similarly, many families intentionally live what they perceive to be a Christian life to find out their kids, in their teenage or young adult years are bitter towards what they perceive as their parents’ hypocrisy. These differences in how their kids think a Christian should live and what they saw in their parents’ daily lives can cause big divisions in families. Questions to Ponder
- When you tell your kids to be nice to their siblings but you are yelling at them when you say it, will your kids wonder why you can yell and they can’t?
- If you tell your kids to get off the computer, tablet or phone because too much can be harmful for them, yet you can’t stay off of social media, games or texting, what are you teaching your kids? You can’t ask them to do what you yourself are not doing.
- If you tell your kids they don’t need expensive new things, yet you get the latest technology when it comes out, how are your kids supposed to reconcile that?
- If you tell your kids they need to read books instead of watching so much television, yet they rarely, if ever see you reading a book, why should they?
- If you tell your kids they need to look you in the eye when they speak to you but you don’t look them in the eye when you are speaking to them, do they feel rejected or not important?
God set parents up as the living, breathing example of how kids are to grow up and what they are to be like. It is a huge accountability system for us that we are to reflect the heart of God to them in all we do. Therefore, you need to be sure your words match your actions. The question is, are we listening to the Holy Spirit’s quiet voice inside us saying “Don’t act like that just for the children, live like that for Jesus!” The best advice we would give you is to always be growing in your life and faith, and always be authentic in front of your kids. A lot of the things you go through, your kids will go through too. Your life’s trials and triumphs will become some of your kids’ best examples on how to deal with and live their lives as young adults. It gives them great stories to share when they get together too! “What good is it, my brothers and sisters, if someone claims to have faith but has no deeds? … But someone will say, “You have faith; I have deeds.” Show me your faith without deeds, and I will show you my faith by my deeds.James 2:14-18