Let’s be honest, kids are a blessing and a burden, often wonderful and sometimes awful, and they do not come with a set of directions. If you are a parent (or grandparent, or caregiver), in a moment of frustration or futility you have likely asked yourself in some form or fashion, “What is the point of parenting?” or “How do I know if I’m doing a good or bad job with this child?” If only there was a bullseye for us to focus in on, then we could start to aim all of our parenting toward a point.
With five children (four teenagers) of our own, we’ve asked this question ourselves and found an answer that we are excited to share with you. It’s the one thing that changes everything. The point of parenting is for you to love God with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength and help your kids do the same.
There is an account about Jesus in Mark 12:28–31 that says, “And one of the scribes came up and heard them disputing with one another, and seeing that he answered them well, asked him, ‘Which commandment is the most important of all?’ Jesus answered, ‘The most important is, “Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.” The second is this: “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” There is no other commandment greater than these.’
When asked what the Tweet of the Old Testament was, Jesus said to love God with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength, and help our neighbor do the same. Therefore, the point of parenting is to raise kids in the love of God since they are our closest “neighbor.” In this devotional series, we will get into the practical ways of growing in the point of parenting. Here are the big ideas we will be studying:
- Love – God loves the parent and child, and God helps the parent and child love God and each other. This is the entire point of parenting : love.
- Heart – How to have the right heart as a parent and get to your child’s heart right, so that they live from a pure heart.
- Soul – How to have a deep relationship with God as your Father from which you train your child to tend to their own soul, so they can spiritually mature.
- Mind – How to keep your mind sharp as a parent, and how to educate your child, so that they are mentally wise.
- Strength – How to guard the physical well being of your child with everything from a safe environment to a good diet, so that they are physically strong.
How well are you walking in a loving relationship with Jesus in this season of your life?