What is the purpose of this discipline? The last line of Psalm 32:9 tells us: to get us to come to Him. God loves us and wants what is best for us. He desires to lead us through intimate face to face interaction. But because of His great love
I remember many years ago, when many pastors were worried about psychology slipping into the church as many began to teach that we should love ourselves. This was quite controversial at the time. At first, as a young man, I championed the cause that said as Christians we are not called to love ourselves, but strictly die to ourselves.
How do you teach your kids to function in the Kingdom here on earth?
I have been asked that question numerous times and although there are many answers, I want to focus on one, and that is...
Love your spouse passionately!
I know that wasn't the answer you were expecting. However, as a husband and father, if I truly want to love my children, I need to first love their mother. In the same way, if I truly want to love my wife, I have to love the Lord first.
You cannot be afraid to show affection to your spouse in front of your children. I know I have heard my kids say, "Ew. Gross!" a few times. I also know they like to see my wife and I show love and affection to each other. This not only shows them how to treat their future family, but it teaches them it is ok to show emotion and passion for those you love. This concept is paramount in their relationship with God.
In everything I am and do, I am always a husband. Let your kids know that in everything they do, they are sons and daughters of the King. No matter what they do or don't do, they can have an intimate relationship with the Father.
I received this revelation after reading Matthew 10:37.
“Whoever loves his father or mother more than he loves Me is not worthy to be My follower. Whoever loves his son or daughter more than he loves Me is not worthy to be My follower."
I remember saying, "What?!" How could I love anything more than my wife and kids? To be honest, I struggled with this scripture for quite a while. I couldn't get it out of my mind. The Lord revealed more to me than I wanted Him to about where my focus and devotion had been. Finally, I submitted to His Word.
Now, when I say submitted, I didn't do anything more than say out loud, "Fine! I love you more than I love my wife and kids!"
One of the first things that came out of submitting to Him was a greater feeling of love for my family than ever before. I had more patience and understanding. I began to mirror my relationship with God to my relationship with my wife. I pursued my wife the same way I pursued God, and it worked. Our relationship has continually grown and strengthened since that time
As the scripture says, "Seek first His Kingdom and His righteousness and all these things will be added to you." As you pursue your relationship with the Father intimately, passionately, intentionally, all these things - your spouse, your children, your job, your hobbies - will be added to you exponentially.
What can you do this week to show your kids where a passionate relationship with God can lead?