This topic is adapted from the PursueGOD Video YouTube channel.
No one is perfect, and even if our kids think we’re the best, we mess up from time to time and fail them as well as ourselves. You don’t have to wallow in guilt if you make a parenting fumble.
- Mistakes happen more easily when we are stressed or spread too thin, like if our schedule is getting too full.
- It’s easy to get impatient with kids when they’re young. As they get older, your kids will begin to perceive you more and to see your other faults and shortcomings they didn’t understand as small children. Admitting your shortcomings becomes more about how you live as a person and a parent. How can you lead a teenage boy through handling lust, for example, if you let lust reign unchecked in your own life?
- When you make a mistake as a parent and you show that you understand the grace of God in that, it provides an important lesson about grace to your children as well. You’ll still make mistakes, but it’s important to show that you are humble enough to admit your mistakes and to even ask forgiveness if you wronged your child.
- It’s important not to put on a fake veneer of perfection, implying to your kids that being a Christian means being perfect, because not only are we not perfect as parents or as people, but this can also set up a fake “bar” in the minds of our kids that they can never reach.
- Don’t be a hypocrite. If you want your kids to follow Jesus and to have a personal relationship with God, you need to live out your personal relationship with God, be honest, and be vulnerable.
- Ask for forgiveness from your kids if you’ve messed up.
The home is one of the best places to train forgiveness, because we are around our family more than we are around anyone else. Model healing, forgiveness, honesty, and grace in your familial relationships. Admit when you’re wrong, and show your kids that we all mess up an we all need to own up.
Written content for this topic by Daniel Martin.
- Watch the video together or invite someone to summarize the topic.
- What is your initial reaction to this video? Do you disagree with any of it? What jumped out at you?
- How did your parents make mistakes when you were a kid? Explain.
- How did your perception of your parents change as you aged? Explain.
- How have you fumbled as a parent? What happened?
- Read 1 Corinthians 13:4-7. What are the situations or circumstances that might cause you to lose patience or focus? Explain.
- Read 1 John 1:9-10. Have you ever had to apologize or ask forgiveness from your kids? What happened?
- How would you summarize your home environment when it comes to admitting wrongdoing, asking forgiveness, and showing grace and reconciliation? Explain.
- Write a personal action step based on this conversation.