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The major theme of Shepherding a Child’s Heart is that the heart is the wellspring of life. Since behavior is heart driven (Luke 6:45), it cannot be understood or addressed biblically in isolation from the heart. This foundational session explores common ways that we try to address behavior without shepherding the heart, helping parents gain skill at working back from behavior to the heart, unmasking heart issues for their children.
The early years are primary years for helping kids understand that they are designed to live under authority. God has placed them in a family and given them parents who possess wisdom, maturity and life experience. Our task is helping them see that God, who is good and kind, has designed them to live as children under authority. God has promised wonderful blessings for children who learn to honor and obey Mom and Dad.
Many issues arise in shepherding our children that cannot be reduced to living under authority. The Bible teaches that the heart strays long before behavior strays. We can help our kids understand the heart attitudes that lie behind common behavior problems. This session will present a paradigm for getting from behavior to heart attitudes and helping children understand ways that their straying hearts show their profound need for the forgiveness, grace and empowerment of the gospel.
Teen years are the time to pass the baton of faith from one generation to the next. Proverbs 1 provides three foundations for the teen years: the fear of the Lord, remembering your parent’s words and disassociation from the wicked. Rich biblical communication is important in this stage of development. Remaining connected to our teens and finding delight in understanding them is key.
Children are worshippers. Like us, they will worship God or they will worship idols. As worshipping beings they filter life’s experiences through a religious grid. Since our kids are worshippers they are designed to be dazzled by the God of the Bible. Parents are called to help them be fascinated and enthralled by God. Psalm 145 calls us to be one generation commending the works of God to the next generation.