This week, we're discussing Chapter 2 in the Give Them Grace book club. To join us, all you need is a copy of Give Them Grace. After that, read these posts:
And don't forget to join us in the Family Discipleship Facebook Group for more discussion throughout the week!
Humans were originally created to reflect God's image, but we are now only shattered mirrors. We constantly search for good and to be good. We're desperate to hear that we are good, but we are not and cannot be good.
Then Jesus came. He succeeded where we failed. He was good and God transfers all of His goodness to us when we believe and trust Him.
Goodness and True Encouragement
Instead of focusing on this goodness, so much of the popular psychology and self-help in most parenting resources is focused on building your child's self-esteem and praising your child. But this is the wrong way to go about encouraging our kids. True encouragement is following the example of Barnabas.
Barnabas looked for ways that God was working in a person's life and encouraged them to be faithful. The point of the encouragement is to praise God, not to exhort their goodness. Building self-esteem leads to craving the praise of others. But the truth is that we are not good and there is nothing good in us to praise.
Our human obedience and morality makes the world a better place to live, but it can't save us… or our kids. Focusing on these things can blind us to our need for a savior. The only goodness that can withstand the scrutiny of a perfectly holy God is Christian righteousness. This is goodness motivated by God's glory, love for Him, and love for our neighbor. Better said, this is Christian righteousness:
“It is the right action at the right time for the right reason.”
Obedience doesn't make us righteous, but righteousness leads us to obedience. We develop a desire to obey out of a heart of gratitude.
Obedience vs Disobedience
Your saved child's disobedience is an opportunity to tell them that Jesus is praying at the right hand of the Father for them and that their sins won't keep them from him because Jesus has paid the price for those sins. When that saved child obeys, the thanks goes to God for the Holy Spirit in him, guiding his choices and actions.
“You cannot raise good kids, because you're not a good parent. There is only one good Parent, and He had one good Son.”
After reading chapter 2 of Give Them Grace, what do you have to say about goodness? What are some specific ways that you can properly encourage your child(ren)?
Share your thoughts in the comments below and in the Family Discipleship Facebook Group.
Have you written a blog post on chapter 2 that you'd like to share? Please add it to the link-up!
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