For several weeks now I have been preaching a series on Wednesday nights entitled, “Shepherding: Principles for Parenting”. I believe it has been a very helpful and needed series to encourage our families to raise their children in the nurture and admonition of the Lord; to help them determine to have a Christ-honoring home where God’s Word is exalted. There is such a desparation withing homes today as they are destroyed by alcohol, drugs, betrayal, anger and mistrust.
A Christ-centered home can be heaven on earth, but a dysfunctional home (which is the normal American home today) is the devil’s playground. It is so sad to see the disparagement within homes today. It is heart braking to see little innocent children tossed around like pawns between selfish parents divorcing. In many cases, children are seen as an obstacle to success or a burden of life.
God wants our homes to be so much more; to be blessed; to be fruitful; to be honorable; to be loving.
In Psalm 23, David gives us an intimate look into the tremendous care of the Great Shepherd for His sheep. From this wonderful passage, we, as parents, also can imitate our Great Shepherd and develop a place of safety, peace, and love for our children.
- Personal Affection In the Home-v.1 “my” shepherd. In John 10 Jesus expounds on the intimacy withing the relationship of the shepherd and his sheep. Whether it is learning play Phase 10, cuddling up watch ungodly amount Anne Green Gables, or my wife having private girl talks before bed, there is a great need to nurture personal affection within home.
- Provision In the Home- v.2, In Matthew 6 Jesus teaches us not to take thought for the needs of life, for He shall supply ALL our needs. He desires our faith, our trust, and our dependence upon Him. Mom, dad, can your children look to you with faith, trust, and dependence, knowing that you will care for them and love them?
- Peace In the Home- v.2, It is interesting to note that the opposite of “still” waters is “troubled” waters. Today we refer to dysfunctional home as “troubled”. Our homes should not be dysfunctional, but rather, a place of peace, where children can feel safety, security, and love. I hope your home is not a place filled with wrath, anger, bitterness, and malice.
- Purity In the Home– v.3, Oh, how important it is that we lead our children into path of righteousness. As shepherd, should lead the example of a godly life before your children. They should be able to look to YOU to lead them.
- Protection In the Home– v.4-6, David had no fear, as long as the Chief Shepherd was with him. 1Jn 4:18 There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love. Of all places, the home (the fold) is the one place where our children ought to feel no fear. They should be comforted there in the care of the shepherd.
Does this describe your home? If not, I pray that you will begin to imitate the Great Shepherd and build your home on His love and example. If you do, your home will be a little piece of heaven on earth.