I have been spending time at my parents’ home. Mom’s been gone two years … dad a little over 2 months. Going through all of the old family pictures and papers brings many smiles and lots of memories. I feel like an archeologist … excavating and collecting artifacts that tell our “Family God Story.” Copies of my grandparents’ birth certificates and wedding license … my mom and dad’s marriage license. I can see them framed and up on the family room wall with some pictures … so that my kids and grandkids will see then and be reminded of not only their family heritage … but their spiritual legacy.
God’s recorded His Family God Story for us to learn from. His desire is for moms and dads to pass the story of His faithfulness to their children everyday … that was a key ingredient in keeping His kids from Canaan … and it is just as powerful for us to use today!
Christian kids are walking away from the faith in record numbers … devastating heartbroken parents. One researcher says that the Church is losing more people than we are winning! That spells the demise of the church if this pattern continues … and the truth is … we are only one generation away from spiritual extinction.
God ordained parents to be the primary agents of their children’s spiritual development. I base this statement on Deuteronomy 6 where Moses is telling God’s children how to stay away from the cultural influences of the Canaanites. These Mediterranean merchants were wealthy … big cities … beautiful homes … industrial … They were extremely sensual and sexual … orgies were a part of their religious practices. And they were pagan. These ancients sacrificed hundreds of thousands of infants in the flames to their gods made of metal and stone.
Those cultural characteristics sound an awful lot like our American culture today. The same forces that lure mankind away from God … are competing for the hearts, minds, souls and bodies of our children. Our job as Christ following parents is to “keep our kids from Canaan!”
This blog is about how we as Christian parents can fulfill this mission. The blog revolves around my book by the same title: Keeping Your Kids from Canaan. Let’s talk about it.
Today we sent an electronic copy of the book to a missionary friend in Uganda … I know the Biblical principles will translate into their culture … the Word is trans-cultural. My stories and illustrations are no doubt way too American. It is exciting to realize that the ministry is going to a place where I have never been. What’s even more fun is that missionary was a “kid” in our youth group over 30 years ago …
Another copy is heading out west … to Idaho … House on the Rock’s ministry sphere has been about 150 radius of Lancaster, PA. This “missionary” to the wild west is one of my former students at Lancaster Bible College …
The book is about generational ministry and impact … legacy. All of our lives are making a difference … the question for us as parents and people … is what kind of impact we are making?
If you haven’t read the “ABOUT” post … please do … it will help you understand the purpose of this blog … blessings
The premise of this book is that Christian parents are abdicating their roles as spiritual leaders of their children and families. This has resulted in “Christian kids” abandoning their faith. Some may take issue with this premise … so I begin this blog with some links to some of the research that pointed me in this direction.
This phenomena flies directly in the face of Deuteronomy 6. As a youth pastor for 9 years, I saw lots of parents place the burden of their child’s spiritual development on my shoulders. It is here that my appreciation for Deuteronomy 6 emerged. It was here that my passion for admonishing and helping parents fulfill their responsibility was born.
When Karen and I had our first son … these words of Moses put their grasp on me as a young father. It was my turn to own this awesome responsibility. Now that our sons have become men … it is our joy to see the fruit of this process.