Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Family Driven Faith - Chapter 6 – Live the Word at Home

In this chapter of Family Driven Faith Voddie delves into what for some may be a convicting topic, our call as Christians to be the one that trains our children. The chapter begins by telling us that “multigenerational faithfulness is an all-day, everyday process.” While much of this deduction comes from Deut 6 Voddie does a good job of tying this concept to the NT so as to quell those that may balk at holding to commands from the OT.

To accomplish this Voddie looks at Eph 6:1-4 , in the section entitled: Paul: A New Take on an Old Truth. For those that have heard Voddie speak on this passage before he does a god job of explaining this passage so that we do see a biblical call to train up our children and that it is not the call of others to be in charge of this training. Voddie explains from this passage three phases of training our children: Discipline & Training Phase, Catechism Phase, and the Discipleship Phase. What we need to see from this is that if you are like me you have failed to start where we should have started and in many ways suffer the consequences now. The hope comes in that it truly is never too late, it may be harder to accomplish but it is not too late. In this chapter he also touches on how easily we as Christians have turned over our understanding of child rearing to psychological “professionals” and all too often do not identify when it is contrary to scripture. In doing this he gives the example of a Christian psychologist that he would agree with on most things but in one area the person strays from scriptural commands.

In Phase 1, Discipline and Training, the goal is to foster obedience in our children. One point that is made is that the goal is not necessarily just doing what we say, which is important, but that children need to do what they are told when they are told and with a respectful attitude. How many of as parents are simply happy to see our children do what they are told? However we learn later that without training up immediate obedience and obedience with a right attitude the child will have issues in the future.

In Phase 2, Catechism Phase, the goal is to give the child not only the right information but also the right reasons and background for that information. Voddie admits that the title “Catechism” may throw people off but the truth is the way the catechisms of old were set up is very helpful in this area of training. While it is not a command of scripture to use catechisms the command it so train correctly and catechisms are a very good tool for this.

In Phase 3, Discipling Phase, the goal is to build on what has already been done so that it becomes obvious that if we, as I am guilty of, have not previously done the first two phases we have a lot of work on our hands but again it is not hopeless. It is also in this section that Voddie touches on the whole topic of education and how we as Christian parents have abdicated our role as the one primarily responsible for the discipleship phase of our child’s training. In this section on Phase 3 the subtitles of the sections deal with various aspects of the education of our children and they are: Importance of Discipleship, Education: The forgotten Key to Discipleship, Education and the knowledge of God, Education and the Great Commission, Education and Worldview Development, Education and Morality, lastly Education and Accountability.

Of all the chapters so far this is one that starts to tie things all together and at the same time may be the most convicting as if you are like me you begin to see how you may have been relying on everything but scripture for rearing your children. This is not to say as believers we do not believe scripture it simply reflects how often as Christians we have a disconnect between our beliefs and our actions, between orthodoxy and orthopraxy. Some may balk at Voddie’s take on public schools and the education of our children but I do think he deals with these objections well and if we are honest we have to admit that sending our children off to public schools is not a wise endeavor.

Next, Chapter 7 – Mark the Home as God’s Territory

No comments: