My spiritual growth influences my children

Posted on Nov 9, 2011 in Spiritual

My personal spiritual growth influences my childrenThis morning I posted a little rant on Life In Student Ministry about, “What’s missing from family-based ministry.” You should check it out if you want the full story, but I’m basically saying that family-ministry can’t be something we just try to get others to do at church — it has to be something we live out in our own families first for many reasons.

I want to take a little different spin on that here for those of us who are ministry families.

In my opinion, there are two main obstacles to parents living out their faith for their kids:

  1. The parents themselves are not at a place spiritually where they have a faith that’s worth passing on.
  2. They really don’t know how to be spiritual leaders in their home nor what it looks like practically.

Furthermore, kids see that their parents often show one side of their personality at church and another at home. What does a kid do when his parents yell and swear at each other at home, but raise hands in worship at church? Youth workers complain that kids act one way at school and another way at church, but those teenagers may have parents who do the same thing between work, home and church. Kids see that and learn to imitate it. They see how faith doesn’t always influence what goes on during the week, and they adopt that “faith” exactly.

Here’s the kicker for me: What do my kids see when they look at me? Do they see a father who pursues the Lord in prayer, who shares his faith with those around him, who genuinely worships, who is sacrificial in serving others? I realize I’m not perfect and they will easily pick apart the struggling areas of my life, but overall, what do they see? Will they see a dad who serves in a church and teaches God’s Word to others, but fail to see how it connects with every aspect of his personal life?

It reinforces to me that investing into my personal walk with the Lord is becoming more and more important, not just for my own spiritual growth, but for that of my children. I need to grow for the sake of my children.

QUESTION: How have you seen your personal spiritual growth affect your children?

About the author,

Tim is a dad who is imperfectly pursuing his wife and children while ultimately trying to pursue the Lord's vision for his family. He's written a few books and dabbles in online video, mostly to support his primary ministry at home.

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