Sunday, April 02, 2017

The Disciple-Making Parent: A Comprehensive Guidebook for Raising Your Children to Love and Follow Jesus Christ - by Chap Bettis

"This book is not a cookbook.  A cookbook lists the ingredients to include, the mixing method, and the needed cooking temperature.  Followed exactly, the dish turns out perfectly every time.  As parents it's easy to assume that if we give our children the right ingredients, keep out the wrong ingredients, and put them in the right environment for the right amount of time, we are guaranteed a certain result.  Parenting doesn't work that way. ... Instead, it's better to think of this material as a guidebook to help you on your parenting journey.  A guidebook is written by someone who has been where you are going.  While not feeling compelled to do everything the guidebook says, it is still helpful to learn from someone else's experience as you forge your own path.  Or, alternatively, you can think of this as a playbook.  Every football team has a collection of plays, called a playbook.  Any of these can be executed during the course of a game.  The goal of the team is to win the game, not execute every play in the playbook." (pg. XIIIff)

"God's intent in giving you the privilege of creating new lives is for you to raise them to know and love him." (pg. 5)

"Children are God's means to transform us.  Their sin reveals our sin.  Their questions reveal our ignorance.  All of these are God's prompts for us to grow." (pg. 15)

"The first battleground of family discipleship is not my child's heart; it is my heart.  Each parent must decide whether he is more concerned that this child is accepted into Heaven or 'Harvard.'" (pg. 17)

"Before God commands us to teach our children, he reminds us of the need we have to love God and to carry his Word in our hearts.  It is impossible to pass on something we do not possess.  Example has always been and will always be the most powerful teacher." (pg. 40)

"A child is God's sanctification machine, calling you to die to yourself daily.  Children are a floodlight on the idols of the heart.  Idols like comfort, looking good before others, control, success, or peace are all revealed by my little sinner!" (pg. 51)

"Circumstances don't cause the reaction of the heart; they merely reveal the true heart." (pg. 52)

"Unfortunately, a shallow view of sin will produce a shallow view of the cross and shallow Christians, as well.  Sin is much deeper than our actions.  It is also wrong attitudes toward God and others.  And deeper than wrong attitudes are wrong affections." (pg. 87)

"...talking together, learning the Word together, and serving others together are all effective means of grace to your children." (pg. 131)

"Your child is made to live for this purpose, battling real spiritual enemies and living a life of kingdom expansion.  He or she cannot be entertained enough to stay in the kingdom.  Why, then, do most youth groups base their ministry on entertainment?  Where is the youth group based on cosmic war?" (pg. 167)

"If spiritual leadership is moving God's people in God's direction through God's means, then prayer is a foundational means." (pg. 187)

Chap Bettis, The Disciple-Making Parent: A Comprehensive Guidebook for Raising Your Children to Love and Follow Jesus Christ (Diamond Hill Publishing, 2016)