During How To Tell A Mountain From A Molehill, the Children’s Ministry Team at Good Shepherd has created content for the K-Zone that mirrors what I have been teaching in the Worship Center.
That means that for the past Sunday, our team needed children’s material to supplement Self-absorption leads to soul destruction from the Parable Of The Rich Fool in Luke 12.
Anyway, in researching the subject, Brooke Presley, who is the Children’s Ministry Leader at our Zoar Campus, came to some sobering realizations. Here they are:
What We Are NOT Teaching
Guess I shouldn’t have been surprised that as I searched for biblical articles to include in the GS Kids Parent Cue last week, I was striking out. I was looking for articles directed to parents about how to help your child not be self-absorbed. I had found lots for Christian Parents about self-esteem, some on self-control, even a few on self-love, but nothing that connected children and being self-absorbed. It is almost as if in our day and culture we would never connect the two. Yet (as a Christian parent among other Christian parents) I am constantly bombarded with questions, dialogue and thoughts about how focused my child and those around him are with themselves. They take pictures of themselves, praise themselves, have to prove themselves and often if we as parents don’t help feed the “self- machine” in our children we are seen as missing something in our parenting.
As I continued my search of viable Biblical information on this topic and continued to not find much, I pondered a few questions:
- Do we think there is nothing wrong with a self-absorbed child?
Maybe there are no articles advising parents on this type of child crisis, because we don’t believe this is a crisis? Maybe we believe our children should grow up to believe that they (although important) are the MOST IMPORTANT? Maybe this is a new type of 21st Century confidence?
- What other subjects is the Christian community NOT discussing with parents?
- By avoiding certain subjects, what are we teaching children by not teaching them?
- How are we (at Good Shepherd) bringing hard subjects to light for adults AND children?
I am not about to answer all these questions now. Numbers 1, 2 and 3 could take many days to answers and of course may differ from family to family, parent to parent and child to child, church to church.
However, I can shed some light on number 4. This month at Good Shepherd we are dealing with some really tough issues in our Worship Service and our Children’s Sunday Morning Programming through the How to Tell a Mountain from a Molehill Series. This series is based on four of the most difficult parables of Jesus. Through connecting our sermon series and kid’s curriculum we are being open with parents and kids about such topics as: things not being fair, but that God is always right; that God is greater than you (whether you are an adult or a child); focusing on the eternal and not the temporary and knowing the difference between the two; that Jesus is the one thing worth more than anything. Because parents and children are hearing the same message, we are hoping to open up communication at home for parents and children on some not too talked about topics (like self-absorption.) At Good Shepherd we believe that faith starts at home, and that parents can be equipped and lead their children to grow in a living relationship with Jesus especially when it comes to talking about hard subjects that the average parent may back away from.
As we navigate through being Christian parents may we not shy away from the tough and sometimes non-culturally agreeing biblical subjects, and may God bless us with resources through churches and strong Christian leaders that help us invest in a generation that is interested in more than themselves.