Growing Healthy Families
January 17, 2010
To Equip Families (all 28 types):
1. To grow themselves in the Lord and,
2. Develop a multi-generational legacy of faithful Christ-like living.
There Is a Problem: What Has Created the Problem?
1. Declining Engagement – caused by competition?
- % based participation is greater with younger kids.
- What causes this lack of interest?
i. Hypocritical or inconsistent role-models: one way at home and another at
“church”. Do they see in parents what they are told they should be?
ii. Is outside competition more of a symptom of the problem. There are kids who
don’t disengage from faith-based activities.
iii. Weak Theology – see below.
2. Poor Theology
- Weak Theology – Their faith is based on the wrong things (i.e. coming to church
instead of a relationship with God through Jesus Christ). As a result, when more
difficult temptations come and parents aren’t there making the decision for them,
their faith is not strong enough to hold up.
- Faith is based on the wrong foundation.
3. Drop-Off Mentality
- How much do we (as parents) allow or rely on “the church” and its representatives to
instill faith in our children?
- If the church is not intended to be the source of faith for our children, what is the role
of the church?
4. Ill-Equipped Parents
- Many parents pass off the responsibility of instilling their children’s faith onto “the
church” because they don’t feel comfortable.
- Often traces back to the fact that parents did not have faith-based experiences at
home. For example, how many of us experienced regular Bible reading, Bible study,
devotions, prayer and acts of worship in their home growing up?
- In what ways can the Church help you to be more equipped to be the primary force in
developing your children’s faith?
5. Decline in the relevance of the Bible/Church
- How often do we turn to “Christian” books, resources, etc. to help us and give advice
on our families and children? Do we rely more on these than the Bible?
- What about the Church and its representatives? How often do we look here for
direction and guidance? Generally, Christians only turn to their Shepherds and
Ministers when it becomes a desperate situation – or as a last resort. Try everything
6. Competing World Views
- How do most people define success? How do you define success? How does this
compare to how the Bible defines success?
- What are secular world views?
i. Materialism, consumerism, relativism, etc.
- This has impacted our families. And to some extent we have bought into these
What Does a Christian Family Look Like?
- Let’s create some word art and “draw” a picture of “Christian Family”.
- Matthew 6:33 –
i. What is the Kingdom of God? What does it mean to seek it? Is it more Reign or Realm?
ii. This scripture is talking about worrying (a present tense conversation) and Jesus
encourages the people to instead of worrying to seek God’s kingdom and righteousness.
iii. See Matt. 3:1-2 and Mark 1:15 – the kingdom here is referred to as a current reality
- 1 Corinthians 11:1
i. Paul thought of himself as their spiritual father. That is why he told them to imitate him
because he imitates Christ. They had a special relationship and that language would
appeal to them.
ii. I would challenge each of us to imitate Christ. Since there are so many ways to act like
Christ, let’s take an opposite approach and consider the top few ways that we do not act
like Jesus. Focus on the things that hurt our families the most.
Homework: Family Discussion and Reflection
1. Make a list of how your family seeks God’s kingdom. Discuss together a few things you can
do (as a family) to better seek God’s kingdom and righteousness.
2. Each member of the family should do a personal assessment and determine whether or not you
currently look like Christ. As a family, discuss how we can help each other to look more like
Christ. Encourage each person to participate and give specific feedback. For example, “you can
help me look more like Christ by . . .” Use these questions to stimulate further questions and
Next Week: We’ll Study Ephesians 5:21-33; Genesis 3 and Male Spiritual Leadership