Throughout youth ministry, I have talked to many, many students who seem to have a rough relationship with their parents. For anyone with teenagers, they would probably say that it is one of the roughest times in that child’s growth and development. Many of the issues can be prevented if parents begin early addressing issues by dealing not simply with actions, but addressing the problems of the heart.My wife and I have received a great deal of instruction and encouragement in this area through books by Ginger Plowman, founder of Preparing the Way Ministries, who has written such books as Heaven at Home and Don’t Make Me Count to Three: A Mom’s Look at Heart-Oriented Discipline.
However, there are certain things that parents need to be disciplined in as well. Moms and dads need to hold each other accountable in order to avoid contributing to their child’s own inherent sinfulness. Therefore, I have compiled a list of things entitled “Ten Ways Parents Contribute to the Corruption of the Children”. Parents are always the greatest influence on the life of their child, whether for the good or for the bad. So, we need to avoid these things and take the positive side as exhortation to the good we should be doing with our kids. Additionally, they are all equally important, so they are in no particular order.
[ten ways parents contribute to the corruption of their children]
- Don’t have fun with them
- Don’t pray for them everyday
- Be their biggest critic without being their biggest fan
- Don’t be honest about your weaknesses and try to hide your sin
- Talk negatively about the church in front of them
- Allow them unlimited and unfiltered access to media (TV, internet, movies, music)
- Don’t be their spiritual leader
- Be inconsistent in discipline
- Major on the minors and minor on the majors
- Compartmentalize your Christianity
If you want your children to grow up without a concern for their own sin and immerse themselves in all kinds of pain and depravity then do these things. However, if you want your kids to have an accurate picture of God because of your example and leadership, guard your life against these snares.