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Parenting Perspective: Magic-Angel-Dust-Jesus

How do we raise our children to love the Lord and serve Him, to have a relationship with Jesus, and make sure they understand who Jesus is? How can we teach them that Jesus isn't magic-angel-dust-Jesus, waiting to sprinkle us when He's ready so they can conquer the world? First of all, we have to believe it for ourselves.

It always surprises me when Christians are taught that God is like a genie in the sky. The Bible is so clear that "in this world you WILL have trouble, but I have overcome the world." (John 16:33) It's a lot easier to focus more on the "overcome" part than the trouble part. Growing up in church, we can get confused and expect nothing bad to ever happen to us because we're good little Christians.

I've struggled with this view of God. I was taught to have faith that God will do exceedingly, abundantly above all I could ask for or think. I was taught to hear God's voice. I also have a fantastic imagination, and I spent a lot of time imagining living in castles. It's very childlike to take this literally and believe you can be irresponsible and expect God to wave His magic wand and set you up in a castle more fantastic than you can imagine.

What a shock to discover He doesn't work that way.

Magic Angel Dust Jesus
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We have to teach our children to have faith that with God ALL things are possible while also showing them how to take responsibility for their actions and work hard. When we offer what we have to God (no matter how little it is), He takes it and makes it into much.

We can teach our children to hear God's voice for themselves. Ask them, "What do you hear God saying about this situation?" If they don't have an answer, explain that they need to get quiet and listen for God's voice.

We can make sure they have a firm understanding of Scripture so they don't get confused about the nature of God. Model spending time in Scripture and invite them to get their Bibles out and read while you read. Ask them what they learned from reading their Bible. Share what you learned.

There are no formulas in our faith. If anyone tries to teach you that if you behave yourself, God will make your life easy, it's time to consider a new teacher. We must be careful not to teach that concept to our children. Instead, teach them God is running the universe, and we can't understand everything He's doing. We can trust Him to do what's best for us and what will bring Him the most glory. That's the most important thing.

Even when we don't understand, we can trust that everything filtered through His hand will be for our good. When it doesn't feel good or look good right now, we can still trust Him. We can lean on His strength. We can wait on God to take care of us.

Christianity is a relationship, not a formula.



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Effective parenting must include spiritual warfare!


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