Blueberry Donuts – Caught Not Taught

I’ve been reading and hearing a lot lately about why students are leaving the church, and even last week wrote a blog on it. Yet as I’ve been doing more reflecting on it, I really think it gets back to the responsibility of the parents. No where in Scripture do I see church leaders being held responsible for what is going on in kids’ lives. Sure, James 3:1 says, “Not many of you should become teachers, my brothers, for you know that we who teach will be judged with greater strictness” but I don’t see the teachers being held accountable for another persons sin, but I do see it being the parents responsibility for their children (Eph 6:1-4, Deut 6:6-9, Titus 2:4, Proverbs 22:6). Now I want to be careful to not cross into legalism here, and I think many times the phrase “it takes a village” to raise a child is very true. We need the church and the support of the people in the church to help raise children-parents need to be willing to admit they can’t do it on their own. Yet what I see throughout Scripture and in my own life is a very important phrase to remember in being a parent. What kids learn is often caught not taught.

This morning I went to the grocery store to buy some more creamer for my coffee. Every time I go to get creamer I grab a donut on my way. This donut it a blueberry donut, which is my favorite donut for one reason – that’s the exact kind of donut my dad always used to get when I was growing up. I remember there was a donut shop in La Crosse, Wisconsin that my dad would take me to (I don’t remember the name of it) and they had a blueberry donut that my dad apparently really liked and would get every time. Because of that, I would also get a blueberry donut, and they continue to be my favorite to this day. So parents: what are you teaching your kids today? Do they see someone who is following Christ with their whole life, or someone who just goes to church because it’s what they are expected to do? Children are a lot more observant than you might think so be careful: your actions speak a whole lot more than your words.

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  1. Louise

     /  March 1, 2013

    Pastor Mike, I see your point about children picking up habits from their parents but I am going to stick up for parents a bit. Parenting is hard and humbling like nothing else. Each child is unique and what works for one isn’t necessarily the best for another child even in the same family. I have seen parents try to do everything right and yet a child has left the faith. Even God who taught and trained his Israelite children in the desert had prodigals so thoroughly human parents cannot be held primarily responsible when their children leave the faith.
    It is so heartbreaking for parents when they have tried to teach and train their children to be Christ followers and the children ultimately reject Christianity. Do not add even more guilt and misery on those parents for not having done it right or not having done enough. Sin enters in to it on both sides.
    I really don’t believe in formulas for parenting. We relied heavily on God’s grace in raising our children, but there are no guarantees.

    • Thanks Louise! I appreciate your feedback. I wasn’t intending to guilt any parents into regret, but I do want to push parents to not expect the “professionals” to take care of every issue in their child’s life. I see far too many parents on students in youth group who aren’t involved in the day to day activities of their students as opposed to people who are actively involved and pursuing relationships with their children. I know I’m not going to find this easy as a parent, and I don’t find it easy to do not as a parent today (doing the best I can to push students to the cross instead of me). I hope and pray that I will set a godly example to my children and the children of other people that I come into contact with.

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