Greg Priebbenow, a Lutheran pastor in Australia and author of the Forming Faith blogsite writes...
“When communicating to parents and grandparents about passing on the Christian faith, I stress that this is a matter of ‘get to’ not ‘got to.’
We pass on the faith because we love our children and young people enough that we want them to know the much greater love of God, personally.
We pass on the faith because it is our joy to be co-partners with God in the shaping of a life for eternity.
We pass on the faith because we desire that our lives make a difference, and the most wonderful difference we can make is to see another grow in the grace of Christ.”
Greg shares a number of “get to” messages that he’s read in Rachel Turner’s book, It Takes a Church to Raise a Parent, and adds a few of his own. He writes that Turner highlights two things about the uniqueness of parents as “instruments of spiritual blessing” for their children:
The influence of personal connection: A parent’s connection is stronger and longer than that of anyone else.
The realness of everyday: A parent is more present here than is anyone else.
Parents should find consolation in the observation that “God is not looking for perfect parents but is seeking faithful ones. What parents do ‘casually and imperfectly’ trumps anything the church can offer.” He shares Rachel’s suggestion that “parents don’t have to go fast they just need to be moving forward.”
So take a breath, parents (and grandparents) and remember that “you’re not alone. The wider Christian community is (your) God-given partner in faith formation.”
With the start-up of the school and church program year, where will you seek to move forward in being a faithful parent or grandparent? Where will you engage in the wider Christian community as a partner in moving forward?
At GenOn Ministries we partner with the church that partners with the parents. There are some ways here.