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Why are parents failing as disciplers?

Bill Wilkie offers the following guest blog on the heels of my two 9/23 blogs. To address the underlying issues, let’s try to answer three questions: What are the symptoms? What is the underlying problem? What is a practical solution? …
By Seth Barnes

Bill Wilkie offers the
following guest blog on the heels of my two 9/23 blogs.

To address the underlying issues, let’s try to answer three
questions:

  1. What
    are the symptoms?
  2. What
    is the underlying problem?
  3. What
    is a practical solution?

Symptoms:
#1 Parents are busy succeeding and/or surviving professionally and in the
family. At work the mantra is “Commit more timework harder not necessarily
smarter and you can keep your job and provide for your family and the
church.” The church does not generally speak into the professional life of
a lawyer, doctor, educator, business person, etc.

#2 Parents want their child to have a career where they can be at least in the
middle class and certainly not have to live with them after high school or
college. Society makes many promises to high school students and college
students. It does not keep them all. But it has enough anecdotal success
stories to create a climate of fear that if your child does not live up, they
will be poor. We need a set of stories that demonstrate that our discipling
system produces a more effective and empowering result for teens. This does not
mean a larger percentage going into ministry or missions. Sorry.

#3 The public educational system was not designed to empower but to educate and
create a literate population. This 18th century model is ineffective even if it
is efficient. We created the public educational system. We can reform it for a
21st century global society. Big assignment. It will take a call from God.

The underlying
problem
Parents do not see Christianity as an empowering influence in their own
professional or family lives, so why should they make discipling, intercessory
prayer, etc., a priority skill set in their teen’s life?

Solutions
1. A body of believers (small groups) needs to become involved in the
career/vocational aspects of its members.

2. Talk is necessary but not sufficient. The group needs to problem solve and
find solutions for problems and opportunities for specific members.

3. The group needs to empower people through challenges, networking and even
financing.

4. The group needs to be intercessory prayer people with very specific
answerable/tangible outcomes that people can see for themselves God at work.

5. When you have modeled this for the adult group members, then you will have
earned the respect and trust to take on the children of the parents that you
have successfully empowered/mentored.

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