For sin will have no dominion over you, since you are not under law but under grace.
(Romans 6:14 ESV)
Give Them Grace: Dazzling Your Kids with the Love of Jesus
by Elyse M. Fitzpatrick (Author), Jessica Thompson (Author), Tullian Tchividjian (Foreword)
Partnering in grace with our children means that we are together learning to rely on the Holy Spirit. Telling our children that we, too, are struggling to understand how the gospel can change us and admitting we really don’t see how it does right now will teach them that faith doesn’t mean that we have certainty or clarity all the time…
This place of transparency and brokenness before our children and the Lord will ultimately be a place of freedom and grace, even though at first it will feel like a place of despair and humiliation. When we really understand that there is nothing we can say or do that will change our children’s hearts, at that moment we’re in the place of humility that is the only door to promised grace (pp. 164-165).
Recently, we had a conversation with our children that gave us a chance to live out what the book Give Them Grace describes above.
Me: Kaden, why do you look so sad?
Kaden: Because I am so selfish and am the bully in the family.
Me: We are all selfish and bullies in some way.
Kaden: No, you and mommy are less selfish because you serve us and others.
Me: We do a better job of hiding our selfishness. There are only two kinds of people – bad people and Jesus.
Kaden: No, you are better because you are a pastor.
Me: Kaden, if you see any goodness in me and think that I am better, it’s because of Jesus. I am a selfish, bad bully rescued by Jesus. The Holy Spirit helps me to follow Jesus who is a good, godly, and true friend. You are my son and you are not a bully. I love you and want to be your true friend. God loves you and that is why he sent his son, Jesus, to be punished on the cross for your sins and take away your selfishness by dying on the cross. Jesus rose from the dead to give you new life and a new heart. The Holy Spirit helps you to remember who you are in Christ – a child of God and not a bully.