Discipleship is “Hands On”

I’m sure you are all aware of the adage that people don’t care what you know till they know that you care. This is a proverb that holds completely true and wreaks of the need for discipleship steeped in the foundation of a relationship. Deuteronomy 6:8 says to impress God’s commands on your children when you walk along the road, lie down and wake up. That’s all the time! So how are you going to spend that much time with someone you don’t have a relationship with? That would be the epitome of awkward…

Parents need to be prepared to get their hands dirty with their children. Establish those relationships in the trenches because after all that is where we all need the help. When you as a parent raise up your sleeves and get your hands down and dirty in your child’s upbringing, there is a message sent to your child that you care and no matter what they get into, you’ll be there. This example has the utmost credibility because it came from our Savior, Jesus Christ. “For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only son” to be with us. Invest in some dirt for your hands in the lives of your children and their heart will follow.

It is important however that this level of wholesome camaraderie still maintain appropriate levels of authority. Your leadership should promote your child’s growth by giving them applicable levels of freedom to honor you and the Lord with their good choices. This is a key point for parents that lack the stomach for spending any prolonged time in the muck. If you make all choices for your child to avoid the trenches, then you are merely managing a situation with questionable longevity. In other words, your inability to somewhat loosen the reins for your child now while you are with them may be effectively kicking the muck down the road. If you are willing to get your hands dirty a bit longer, you can help your child learn how to make these discerning choices on their own. This is truly a gift to give to the next generation, but it takes getting your hands dirty. Few children sit in a blind to watch their dad hunt. Furthermore, there is more satisfaction when you are next to your child when they put that first rack on the wall and that is certainly better than the alternative of them being left to gauge the dangers of the hunt on their own.

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