“Direct your children onto the right path, and when they are older, they will not leave it.” – Proverbs 22:6.
Loving our children like the One who is love seems like a daunting task. How do we move beyond ourselves – our selfishness and our busyness – and dig deep into our hearts to access a love that is Christlike for our children. How do we love your kids the way Christ loves us?
God, in such pursuit of us, sent His son to die in our place. And Jesus, in such pursuit of us, agreed to live faithfully, teach the truth as the Word made flesh, and die so we could find freedom. Jesus came to live among us so He could know humanity and so that we could know Him. What a powerful picture of pursuit. I know in order to love my kids like Jesus, I must be in constant pursuit of their hearts. I must learn and understand them so I can give them what they truly need. A heart of pursuit seeks to learn about the unique children God has given us and pursues an understanding of what they need and how they need it.
We need to tap into the ultimate and greatest source of love, Jesus Christ. Our foundation must be built on the Rock. When our foundation rests upon God then we can derive a much deeper sense of purpose and meaning in our parenting. It goes well beyond our personal willpower and strength. And it can and will last for eternity leaving a legacy for generations.
As John 1:16 tells us, it starts with grace: “For from his fullness we have all received, grace upon grace” (ESV). The idea of grace, of receiving something we do not deserve, is embodied in the person of Jesus. Jesus is God’s grace personified. A heart of grace gently corrects our children with love as the driving force in order to help them understand the gift that is freely available to them, no matter their state.
Then it is a matter of priority. What gets your time and attention is within your control; you make a choice on where and what you spend your time on. Choose to develop love-powered parenting. Establish goals that you aspire to in your parenting. Love drives it all. Love will be the result of your efforts. Love is the priority from the underlying motivation to the ultimate goal in your parenting.
Everything we need to love our kids like Jesus comes from the truth of who He is and what He did for us. It’s that simple. Now it may not seem simple in the daily grind of parenting but if we can take a step back it will all come into focus.
There are days we will fail to love our children as Jesus loves us. Fortunately, His mercies are new every morning. The best part of the reality of His love is that we can get up tomorrow and try again.
- How can you love your kids like Jesus this week? In which of these areas do you need the most grace?