This past Sunday we spoke about Church from Col 3:14-4:6, and didn’t get to deal with the part about Family Life. To that end we’ve once again enlisted the help of Melanie Blignaut for our blog, as she has some helpful comments on family life in light of Col 3:18-21. If you would like to study this passage further then perhaps listen to the sermon ‘Work as Worship’ from the Cross Centered Life Series.
Children are not naturally obedient creatures. My eldest daughter conveniently goes deaf whenever I utter a sentence containing the words “tidy up”. My youngest, now in the throes of the Terrible Twos, likes to test the limits of my patience every chance she gets. Teaching obedience is a daily, often hourly struggle.
My children must be obedient to us as parents, but not simply “because I say so”. I want them to learn the joy of obedience and that honouring their parents pleases God. If my children cannot respect and obey us, then how will they ever learn to respect and obey God?
Teaching obedience is not solely about telling my children how to behave or what to do. How we live as a married couple and a family has the most impact on them. When I submit to my husband, our daughters are shown that submission to Christ is a beautiful way of expressing love. When my husband shows his love for me, our daughters see the sacrificial love that Christ has for the church.
When our daughters see us obey God’s Word and serve Him with cheerful hearts, they learn there is joy in service and obedience. When we tackle each task, no matter how mundane, as though we are doing it for Christ, our daughters learn humility.
Of course, this is easier said than done. We need to work on our own hearts first, to make sure that we are sincere and joyful in the way that we obey and serve God.
We are not perfect people. We are not perfect parents. Our children are not perfect. But Christ is our standard, and so we look to Him – our hope and our reward.
You can follow Mel’s writing at her blog ‘Wind in a Letterbox‘