“Parenting takes no work.” -No One
It may just be me, but I’m witnessing more parents who are beginning to outsource their responsibilities as parents. The definition of outsourcing, according to a business model is this, a situation in which a company employs another organization to do some of its work, rather than using its own employees to do it. However, we want to now define it according to Parenting Terms, A parent who will place the responsibility of another individual or group to train up their children, either emotionally, physically or spiritually.
Now before you decide to stop reading this because you either think this does not pertain to you or you wholeheartedly feel I’m off my rocker, please at least read this example and see if you then understand where I am coming from.
Birthday celebrations for our children. There was a time that we as parents would make our child’s cake from scratch. We would sift the flour, add the baking soda and salt, and then combine the eggs and milk. We would bake that cake and then decorate it ourselves for our child. Then, the cake box came along. All the dry ingredients were already mixed for you. All you had to do was add the wet ingredients. You would still decorate the cake. But some of the work was eliminated. Next, you discovered that your local grocery store would not only make the cake of your choosing, but they would also decorate that cake from a myriad of choices to suit the taste of your child.
Now fast forward to today. We have Chuck E. Cheese’s, and other such places for that birthday celebration. Our only responsibility is to pay the bill. They will not only make the cake and decorate it. They will feed all the guests. They will entertain and even sing to your child. Yes, we have now “outsourced” the Birthday Party.
This is just one small example. However, as a Children’s and Families Pastor for the past 20 years, I have personally witnessed parents outsourcing their child’s spiritual guidance and teaching. The church is thought to be the Spiritual Leader by these parents. They forget that we only have them for 1-2 hours each week out of a 168 hour week. It’s time we all start making those cakes from scratch again. Spiritually speaking.
Parents, I truly understand how hectic and crazy our weeks have become. Maybe the best way to learn how to cook from scratch is to start with a simple recipe. Take time ask your child, “How can I pray for you?” Then pray for them right there. Pick up a Child’s Devotional from the Youth/Children’s table and share with your child. Use Pastor Bill’s “Take It Home” each Sunday to spur on conversation with your child on the way home.
Instead of “Outsourcing” let’s make a commitment to begin to “Insource” the spiritual teaching and guidance for our children.
“And you must commit yourselves wholeheartedly to these commands that I am giving you today. Repeat them again and again with your children. Talk about them when you are at home and when you are on the road, when you are going to bed and when you are getting up.” Deuteronomy 6:6-8
Here’s to learning to cook from scratch again!
Joe & Kerry