[Family Flourishing] Parenting our beloved children, as beloved children
Dear Trinity Family,
Thank you for your prayers for our son, Joel. He is recovering well. We are grateful for your love and support. Parenting is a lifelong journey! Someone recently asked what stage of parenting we are in. I might call it the "stage of dependance." We are learning to trust God to help us be present to our children in unpredictable ways. Some are joyful like graduations and weddings. Others are difficult like medical emergencies and life decisions. We are often on our knees with our hands open. God's spirit ministers to us providing what we need. We are also strengthened by the love and prayers of family and friends.
I am thankful that Our Heavenly Father provides a "real life" parenting guide in the Gospels. God names Jesus "Beloved in whom I am well pleased" (Luke 3). God remains present throughout Jesus' life (Luke 6). Jesus trusted God in hard circumstances (Mark 14). I am challenged by these examples. A parent's call to proclaim love and pleasure in their children, to remain present in all kinds of circumstances and to encourage them to trust God can seem overwhelming.
But God, in His mercy, does not ask us to do any of these things on our own. Through Jesus, parents receive, "You are my beloved child, in you I am well pleased." And we can pass it on to our children. We love them and God loves them! We experience God's presence throughout our lives and we invite our children to join in through Scripture, prayer, worship, service, and ordinary life. By faith we live out the greatest commandment to "Love God and Love neighbor as ourselves" and we invite our children into this life of love.
I pray that this summer, parents (and anyone who cares for children) will receive the Love of God and love your children in whatever "stage" of parenting you are in. And if you are looking for encouragement and community, consider joining the parenting zoom group beginning this Wednesday at 8:15 pm...
Join here >> Parenting: 3 books & 3 couples
Resting in Jesus,
PS - Be on the lookout for a special re-purposed paper bag arriving on Trinity Sunday school families doorsteps this week. Inside you will find activities, notes and other treats from your Sunday school team. We are missing the amazing Trinity kids!
Family Activities for the summer - World Vision has some great ideas for ways to encourage generosity in your children
Waddling Together - a blog post about connecting and wonder.
Talking with children about Racism and Violence - This resource is practical with good recommendations. I would add reading scripture, prayer and reminders about God's presence and love for His children.
Amazing Swish Machine - Pastor Matt asked me to include a sports link - this is probably not quite what he had in mind, but it is pretty amazing!