So you are a parent and you have been granted to have, in the purposes of God, the great privilege of bringing up children. So what are your goals as you engage in this extraordinarily privileged work? I was pondering recently upon how easy it is to parent your children with the goal that you are getting the praise for “how you have brought them up” or something along those lines. Or putting it another way, if your children turn out to be of a certain character or to have certain behaviour then people will conclude that you must be a fine Christian.
And what is wrong with all that? Fundamentally in these scenarios parenting becomes a means of self-indulgence. My children become the vehicle through which I obtain status and prestige.
Rather, the main goal of our parenting should be the honour of the Lord. As regards the character of our children what do we want above all? We want them to fear the Lord. We want them to honour Him. Whether that means we are well-spoken of or not is not an issue. What matters is that our children follow the Lord. And in pursing this goal we want them to maximise every potential in their lives. So we study our children, coach them, discipline them, and generally guide them so that they are everything that God created them to be.