Welcome to Redeemer Bible Church
We gather on Sundays at 10:30 at Keswick Christian School Chapel
10101 54th Ave N
Saint Petersburg, FL 33772
Note that During the week, we are not on the school campus. Instead, you can contact Pastor Cole directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Don't Build Walls: Aim at the Heart
An Expository Series on Parenting
Parenting children is by far the most taxing, difficult, and challenging task of life. But not everyone comes to the task equally. Some don’t have a good example from their own upbringing to help guide them. The lack of experience itself can be anxiety-producing for some. Other new parents approach the challenge without an intentional parenting strategy. So, whatever they bring to the table, parents naturally look around for guidance to assist them in the journey.
Rules are the natural form of help many new fathers and mothers turn to. After all, just as we are governed by laws in our culture, so also rules are designed to govern behavior. A parenting strategy focused on enforcing rules seems to make sense. And using rules is easy to do. After all, how much time and energy does it take to lay down a few rules for children to obey? Not much. And, you might add, rules appear to govern behavior and that’s what it’s all about, right? Don’t we want our children to be on their best behavior?
Rules can govern a child’s behavior, no doubt, especially when they’re in your sight. But establishing rules as a way of regulating behavior is a time-bomb waiting to blow up. It is the child’s heart that governs a child’s behavior. The heart is the operating center of every boy or girl (Proverbs 4:23; Luke 6:43-46). So, every parent’s strategy must be first and foremost to develop the heart. It is the heart where desires, cravings, emotions, loves (for God and neighbor), dreams, interests, and wants are born and developed.
If the heart is not developed intentionally as part of a parenting strategy, no sooner than the child is out of your sight that he or she reverts to the cravings of his or her flesh. The flesh is the traitor within children that will comply with rules when necessary, but will show its true colors when out of your sight.
Rules are like walls: they are external and can curb our choices, but they fail to do the one essential task in parenting—change the heart.
Targeting the child’s heart is the key to parenting. The heart of education is the education of the heart. Once the heart is shaped and developed, it won’t matter whether they’re in your sight or in a distant land. Their conduct will flow from the heart. Don’t build walls. Aim at the heart.
Parenting is the challenge of a lifetime. So, our parenting series is designed to encourage and equip parents with a biblical strategy of their own to shape and develop the heart of their children.