Thursday already! Weeks are zipping by and I hardly notice until it is Thursday again! And how many weeks of School (summer) vacation has raced by already? Are we nearing the end of the third week? I’m shaking my head in disbelief.
I’ve been giving I Thessalonians a casual (suited for every day use – not formal) read this morning; it is such a rich Book that even a causal read brings out the pencil for underlining. Like this:
11 for you know that we treated each one of you the way a father treats his children — 12 we encouraged you and comforted you and appealed to you to lead lives worthy of God, who calls you into his Kingdom and glory.
The way a father (and Mother) treats his children.
Paul loved the people at Thessalonica. They were family to him and in his words to them we can learn about family. Such as how to interact with children, and we only have three points to remember!
1. Encourage them.
Don’t belittle them even when they have messed up. Even discipline is to be for THEIR good NOT because WE are angry or tired or hungry or irritated or any other excuse we may offer for OUR poor behavior.
And when they show an interest in sports, music, art, writing, sewing, cooking, scrap booking, etc. ENCOURAGE them – find a way to help them succeed; within godly reason, of course!
2. Comfort them.
When their little hearts are broken big, don’t dismiss their pain just because it is not adult sized; take time to comfort them; take time to listen even when they are not talking. And comfort them with the security of boundaries; godly boundaries that are met with consistent ‘comforting’ discipline when those boundaries are breached. Comfort them by providing a home of godly peace; eliminate as much chaos (physically, emotionally and spiritually) from the home as GOD and you can muster.
3. Appeal to them to lead lives worthy of God
And this one! Crucial! I think it is mentioned third because if we are not doing 1 and 2 we are not making good progress on doing 3. Make living for JESUS appealing! For me, we don’t make living for JESUS appealing by christianizing the world’s play book. We appeal to them to lead lives worthy of GOD by authentically loving JESUS (and them) and living holy lives ourselves!
Truth is I am no expert here, nor do I have a perfect track record; however, this casual reading of ABBA’s play book gave me some serious thought! Serious enough to share with you. 🙂