Keepin’ Things Real: Parenting - 7 ways to lead your family (Part 7)December 07, 2010
“Any kingdom divided against itself will be ruined, and a house divided against itself will fall" Luke 11:17
What profound parenting advice from Christ...a house divided against itself will fall! If you have been a parent for any length of time...you no doubt have experienced kids who play mom and dad against one another. You know...the proverbial, "well I asked Dad and he said it was OK!" Without a doubt, when Mom and Dad are not on the same "Parenting Page" they become a house divided that cannot stand. So we encourage you as parents to make absolutely certain that your communication is open, you talk before you discipline, and you make sure you discuss decisions so that you can make them together. This is hard, deliberate and intentional work...but it will ensure that you are not a house that becomes divided.
But that is not what this blog is about! We want to leave you with this: the call for parents to be LEADER PARTNERS. In other words, a mom and dad who are leaders because they are living and loving one another as partners for life.
One of the greatest things we were told and must remind you of today is this: Your spouse in NOT YOUR ENEMY! Oh, you have an enemy who wants to steal, kill and destroy your marriages and he is relentless in setting himself up against you and your marriage...this is why you must remain partners....fellow warriors...intimate allies walking through the dangerous waters and unknown mind-fields of marriage and parenting. Your kids need to see you love each other unconditionally, support one another relentlessly, be committed eternally and united consistently.
So here are four ways you and your spouse can be LEADER PARTNERS:
1. Be COMMITTED to the marriage...the fabric of security for your kids is Mom and Dad together....never use the threat of divorce....stay committed...and communicate your commitment to one another often....it never hurts to remind one another that you are in this for the long haul. Besides, your kids will exhale and emotionally rest when they know mom and dad are OK.
2. LOVE IN ACTION. We all know that actions speak louder than words - in fact, the scripture reminds us in 1 John 3:18 "Dear children, let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth." Not only is it good for you to tell one another how much you love each other and how committed you are...but you need to demonstrate that through your actions. Your kids need to see this too. They need to see you hug, kiss, hold hands, give gifts and go on dates. In fact, the way they see you love each other will show them how to love their future spouse.
3. Make your marriage a PRIORITY! I know that sounds simple...and most of us would say, "of course my marriage is a priority, everything I do is for my family!" But if we are honest, all our busyness and all our demands may have allowed everything else to take precedent over the marriage. Careers, kids, church and community service, friends, hobbies...and on and on the list can go! When these things become more important than developing the relationship with your spouse, we would say your marriage is no longer a priority. Even your kids can become the priority of your family...guard against this...protect your time as a couple....keep things in your life in balance....have a shared vision as a couple...go on dates together....pick a project...make sure you are making emotional deposits into the marriage so that it is the most important relationship you have...other than your relationship with Christ!
4. SERVE ON ANOTHER! Spouses who are leader partners serve on another. They work together..they don't default to their roles...they don't have the "I take care of the outside and she takes care of the inside" mentality. They serve one another. Remember, Christ tells us that there is no greater love than when someone lays down their selfishness, their ego, their pride, their very life.
Friend, Christ is the epitome of the "radical loss of self" and if we want to demonstrate HIS character in our homes and if we want a house that will stand the test of time...then we must follow his example. After all, Christ was committed all the way to the cross, he loved us not just with words but with actions, we were the priority of his life and he certainly came not to be served but to serve. Mom and Dad...follow Christ example and be LEADER PARTNERS, when you do, you will have an incredible marriage and raise a home that will not fall.
Dale and Jena
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April On Friday, May 05 at 10:59 AM
I woke up tonight, or should I say this morning, and couldn't sleep so I found myself here in your blogs, starting from the beginning. I just finished this series on parenting and oh such truths I desire in my life for my children and family. Thanks for sharing the Truth with those of us needing a little guidance.
Rahma On Saturday, August 08 at 11:00 AM
This is a neat suammry. Thanks for sharing!
Cecilio On Tuesday, September 09 at 10:59 AM
The expertise shines through. Thanks for tankig the time to answer.