Theologically, we know that the church is called to leave what’s comfortable and propel itself out into the darkness as light, living the counter-culture life of the kingdom of God.
But here’s a question all leaders need to consider: How can a church accomplish that mission unless the families of the church are living with that same mindset? Every church would be “missional” if the parents understood their role in discipling their children.
Generally, we understand the word discipleship to mean teaching the truths of Scripture, the doctrine and theology of God, and establishing the moral codes of the faith. All this is good, but only if we understand the fuller meaning of Jesus’ idea of what a disciple is.
When He used the word, He actually meant what we might call an apprentice. Western—non-participatory—discipleship is satisfied when a person knows concepts about God, but apprenticeship isn’t satisfied until the person has learned to live the life of God. This is a simple but profound switch in thinking for several reasons:
God is challenging us to pursue Him with all our hearts.
Our Society, which includes the body of Christ, reflects a generation that has wandered from God's original constitution. What is a constitution? More than a document, it's a system that dictates the character, boundaries, temperament and structure of how something is governed.
I believe that every family should have a constitution. Just think about it: You would never enroll your child in a school that lacked an infrastructure. And you wouldn't put your investments and earnings in a banking system void of policies and procedures mandated by the Federal Reserve System.
Even the animal kingdom operates by a constitution—one of instinct. The governing law of nature that God deposited into animals works like a divine compass. You will never see an eagle protesting to the Creator that he wants to be a fish.
As you can easily assume from our recent picture, my wife and I are blessed with two healthy, bright, wonderful children. They are both miracles.
Our son, Zion Seth, had a very traumatic birth that, according to the attending physicians, should have left him brain damaged from oxygen deprivation. But we “spoke to the mountain” expecting it to move and God honored His Word. Our son is anything but mentally challenged. During high school he scored in the top 5 percent in the U.S. on his ACT test.
Seth also had a physical handicap: he was a toe-walker until the age of eight. He never walked without walking on his toes. A specialist suggested surgery, but he warned us that the process would be very risky and could result in him being crippled for life.
As we discussed the options, I heard God say, “Leave this place and don’t ever come back.” Soon after, in a large convention, two Spirit-filled ministers joined me in intercession over Seth for about 20 minutes. He was healed and has walked flat-footed ever since.