Jesus welcomed the people, taught them about the Kingdom of God and healed those in need. Luke 9:11

Seeds of the Kingdom

You Can’t Grow Disciples by Osmosis

by Paul Watson

Train a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not turn from it.
Proverbs 22:6, NIV

My twenty year old son recently made a commitment to Jesus Christ. He came back to the Lord. Now you would expect that a child born into a Christian family – full time ministers of the Gospel no less – and brought up hearing about God, the Bible, and the Christian life, to have been a follower of Jesus from his earliest days.

The problem however is that I was so busy running a church and then ministering with an international ministry organisation that I neglected to train up my son to really know Father God and to understand His word. It’s like somehow I expected my son to grow in Christ by some form of osmosis.

It doesn’t work that way. My son left home at 17 to join the Navy and has in the past several years experimented with many spiritual avenues, seeking to find the truth. Praise God that he has come now to know the truth – the person of Jesus, and is seeking to grow in Him. He wants to be a chaplain to help other searchers find the answers to life’s big questions, and to help those caught up in the bondages that are the result of seemingly attractive spiritual options.

When our children take pathways away from God, it is very difficult for us parents. What can we do? Try to convince them of the pitfalls; become anxious, or angry, or sad? Yes, I felt all these. Never give up on them. Pray, pray and pray. Keep the door open always. I had to learn to trust God, for He cares for my son more than I do.

Recently I was teaching the course "Healing for Parental Wounding" at our ministry centre near Sydney. Through an amazing set of events my son was in attendance. During the Saturday evening session, which I consider the very climax of the weekend’s teaching, my son became very upset, and my wife Diane advised me quietly that he needed me. Here I was confronted with the old familiar scenario – a choice - the people, or my son. This time I chose my son. I left the teaching and ministry with another person to finish, and spent two hours being reconciled to my boy. God has blessed us both through that! Now my son is moving in his destiny in Christ Jesus.

Are you a parent? Model your discipleship to your family and be deliberate in teaching them the truths of the word of God. There is nothing more important!

Prayer for Parents: Heavenly Father, please forgive me for the times I have neglected my children for other people, or seemingly more important or pressing needs. Would You please draw my wayward child back to Yourself by revealing the truth to them. Please give me the courage where necessary to ask them for their forgiveness where I have failed them as a parent. Thank you for Your grace and mercy. Amen.

Paul Watson Watson was for 15 years an Anglican Minister in Sydney, Australia before joining Ellel Ministries full time in 2004. Together with his wife Diane he was involved in establishing the first Australian Ellel Ministries centre “Gilbulla” near Sydney. Currently they are leading the work at Ellel Pierrepont in Surrey, UK. Paul & Diane have 4 adult children and 8 grandchildren.

 

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