We’re not experts, but we have learned a few things in the past six years since becoming parents. For example, if your child is sick and you’re awake in the dark at 2:30 a.m., stay away from Google. Whatever you do, just say no to the internet. In the glow of your smartphone, your child will inevitably have leprosy. In the light of day, it’s probably an ear infection.
We’re kidding, kind of.
How many of you have been there? Becoming parents has been one of the most frightening and challenging experiences of our lives, but at the same time, it has been a time of rich spiritual growth that has humbled us, required us to rely on God in a deeper way, and provided such a clear picture of the overwhelming, never-stopping love of our Heavenly Father.
There is a lot of parenting advice out there, but we praise God for the church community at Mercy Hill, which provides us with gospel-centered truth to disciple the next generation.
Our Children Are Like Arrows
On a Sunday night in 2014, a little sleep-deprived as first-time parents to a five-month-old baby, we sat in the clubhouse at Bur-Mil Park in Greensboro and listened to Pastor Andrew teach from Psalm 127. His message: as parents, we are the primary disciple-makers in our home. The world is not passive toward our kids, so we as parents cannot be passive. We must actively teach our kids about the gospel and encourage them to take risks to advance the mission of God.
If we take our advice from the world, it’s easy to parent out of fear. But God has a different way for us. The ultimate goal of parenting is to let our kids go to take the gospel to the nations. Psalm 127:4 says, “Like arrows in the hand of a warrior are the children of one’s youth.”
Our kids, as Pastor Andrew explained, are like arrows who must be shaped, sharpened, aimed, and ultimately launched for God’s glory. It’s exactly the message we needed to hear that night, and thankfully, we were given the opportunity to be commissioned in carrying it out within our young family.
Making Disciples at Home
One of the resources Mercy Hill offers to get families started in disciple-making is Parent Commissioning. This is a sweet time for families to gather in celebration of God’s blessing through children. It is also an opportunity for parents to learn more about shepherding kids in the love of Christ. The church staff provides practical resources and tools, and each family is surrounded by members of their Community Group who serve them a meal and pray with them. It’s been such a blessing to be a part of Parent Commissioning with our kids, now 2 and 6, as well as multiple times in love and service to families in our Community Group.
Because Mercy Hill is passionate about seeing the next generation raised up to love and follow Jesus, our church invests deeply in us as parents and partners with us to disciple our children to love Christ, serve Christ, and take the gospel to the ends of the Earth.
If you’re considering Parent Commissioning, click here to sign up today. Our kids need for us to teach them about Jesus, and Parent Commissioning is Mercy Hill’s commitment to partner with parents on this disciple-making journey.
Like arrows in the hand of a warrior, shape them, sharpen them, aim them, and let them fly.
-Andrew & Laurie Hogan (MH Members)