Your children are lost in a world of mixed messages, lies, and misinformation. They need an interpreter to help them stay in the light of God’s reality. Join AMBrewster today as he provides you some biblical tools to help your children break free from sin’s delusion.
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Click "Read More" for today’s Episode Notes and Transcript.
In the month of October alone, TLP has been heard in over thirty countries. That means that a large percentage of you are likely multilingual. Of course, it’s impossible for me to know, but I’m interested in how many of you speak more than one language.
But anyway, those of you who are multilingual and those of you who’ve ever found yourself conversing with someone who doesn’t speak your language know exactly how important a quality interpreter is.
I remember having a deaf friend of mine ask me to interpret for him as he spoke with a native German speaker.
And though I was fluent in American Sign Language and verbally fluent in German at the time, my German wasn’t strong enough to bridge the gap to Sign Language. So, there I was translating from German to English to Sign Language and back again.
Yeah, that was fun.
But more on interpreters in a minute.
As a podcast consumer I realize how easy it is to listen to an episode without interacting at all with the host, episode notes, and other calls to action.
The podcast is so easy to consume who you’re driving, working out, doing chores, or using the restroom.
Come on, you know we all do it.
Anyway, it’s so easy to listen while otherwise engaged that I hardly ever take the additional steps to look at the tools and resources and links provided in the descriptions.
But I’d also like to make the observation that the times I do interact with the material by clicking the links, I’m almost always glad I did.
With that said, I’d like to challenge you to start interacting with Truth.Love.Parent. just a little more. We are so thankful you’ve subscribed and are listening, but we genuinely believe we can serve your family and others better when you take a moment to share an episode, download the episode notes, rate and review, sign up for that free download or parenting course, or send us a topic for the show.
We think you’ll be happy you did.
Alright, why am I proposing that your children need an interpreter?
We humans are so incredibly limited. When I taught speech to juniors and seniors we discussed the basics of communication. Most of us think that communication is merely talking to someone. Well, that’s not accurate.
True communication happens when both people understand the messages being presented. That alone can be challenging.
But there’s so much more than that.
First, there’s the message to consider. This message has not only content, but it also has form. And in a face-to-face exchange that content and form is often received through both the visual and auditory channels — which means that our verbal communication is potentially being confused or benefitted by our nonverbal communication. And any misunderstanding of any of these parts leads to communication problems. But that’s just the tip of the proverbial communication tongue.
Surrounding every form of communication is a broader situation. Communicating incorrectly within the situation can cause additional issues.
Then there are the ever-present distractions that fight to steal understanding from even the simplest of explanations.
But what about the communicators’ field of experience? If I start talking about gerunds, dangling participles, Oxford Commas, and floccinaucinihilipilification, some of you will understand exactly what I’m talking about because we share a field of experience. The rest of you will be at least partially lost.
My point is that most of our children are in a constant state of information overload. And all of that information is trying to communicate something to them. Assuming all the information was Christ-honoring, there will still be significant issues with communication.
But let’s complicate the issue even more by stating the obvious — much, if not most, of the information your kids are interacting with is not Christ-honoring.
And for some reason, we expect our kids to decipher it all and make the right choices because we told them to.
Consider with me II Timothy 4:3-5 "The time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions, and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander off into myths. As for you, always be sober-minded, endure suffering, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry.”
Friends, sinners are predisposed to waking away from truth and wandering into myths. Before we’re saved, the Bible describes us as blind and incapable of truly understanding spiritual truth. And even after we’re saved, our propensity is to do what’s right in our own eyes.
And isn’t this true of our children? Isn’t it funny how they won’t prepare for the quiz their teacher told them would be on Friday because their friend suggested the teacher canceled it? Isn’t it amazing how they can be bathed in Truth and yet choose the self-destructive path?
So, if we don’t want our kids living in a delusion, and if we want them living in God’s reality, how does God expect us to help them in this endeavor?
I believe we’ll find most of what we need from this passage.
First, let’s notice that the opposite of delusional living is being sober-minded, persevering through suffering, doing the work of an evangelist, and fulfilling your ministry.
All Christians have been called by God to be temperate — to have self-control. This flies in the face of the our world’s Failure Philosophy that preaches you can have whatever you want, however you want it, and as much of it as you want, whenever you want it.
Secondly, we’ve also been called to persevere, be patient, and have long-suffering . . . especially in the face of difficulty. This could not stand in any more opposition to the hedonistic delusion of the world that says we need to live for pleasure, temporal happiness, and comfort.
I want to stop here and discuss Matthew 5 for a minute.
The first part of the Sermon on the Mount is commonly known as the Beatitudes. To be fair, it’s not my favorite title, and since it’s not a biblical term, I’m free to not like it.
I don’t like the term because I believe it’s oversimplified a passage that’s far more rich in Truth for life than we can begin to understand.
The first nine verses unveil not only attitudes we need to have, but the grand journey of our spiritual maturity — the veritable image of a Christian who lives in the reality of God. This image includes a humble, submissive, righteous, merciful, peacemaking individual. And that’s what make verse ten and eleven so shocking.
Regardless of how sweet and loving and gracious this person is, he needs to be ready to be hated . . . and respond correctly.
“Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness' sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 11 “Blessed are you when others revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account. 12 Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you.”
Jesus told us that people would hate us because they hated Him. There’s not way around it.
Listen, our perseverance in this life must not be limited to the mountain top experiences. It needs to carry us through the Valley of the Shadow of Death. And it’s only those who rest in God’s reality that can pass through such a place and fear no evil because they believe that God is there to care for them.
So, if our children are living in the Reality of God, then they will have self-control and perseverance. But our children have also been commissioned to evangelize the lost. Just as Christ submitted to the will of His Father, we too are to submit to that same will. Our greatest goal should be to share the amazing Truth of God with all people. Staying grounded on His Word makes it hard to misinterpret the information flying at us.
And lastly, if the previous three didn’t nail it, then Paul says simply, “Do your job.” We and our children need to serve and proclaim and submit to God’s perfect philosophy of life.
So, our first point today teaches us that we shouldn’t want our kids living a delusion, but instead we should desire for them to live in the Reality of God by being self-controlled, persevering, Gospel-centered, servants of the Lord.
So, number two is going to answer the question, how do we help them interpret all the information out there so they reject the delusions and embrace the Truth?
Well, we just need to look a little earlier in the passage.
And that’s today’s second big point. Listen as I read, “Preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with complete patience and teaching.”
Earlier when I read verse three I said, “The time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching.” But those thoughts are actually conditions of verse two. Listen to them put together.
“Preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with complete patience and teaching. 3 For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions, 4 and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander off into myths.”
Please note that it’s because of all the Failure Philosophies and itching ears and myths that Paul is telling Timothy to engage in seven specific activities.
And lastly, before we look at those seven in detail, please understand that this passage is not solely a requirement of preacher boys, and no one else has these responsibilities. No! And I say again, No!
In order to help our children interpret the lies and misinformation of this world, we must be doing the exact same things Paul’s encouraging Timothy to do.
And here they are:
Number one, we need to preach God’s divine Truth. We need to proclaim to our children, “Thus saith the Lord!” This word preach simply means to publish, herald, or proclaim. This passage fits beautifully with episode 92, Christian Parenting 101. Just like Deuteronomy 6 commands our parenting to be brimming with God’s Word, so here too we’re reminded how vital the Bible is to defeat Failure Philosophies.
Number two, we’re told to be ready in season and out of season. This means that we must always be prepared to meet the need of the moment, whatever it may be.
And this does not happen accidentally. We must be trained, discerning, and wise. The evening before the Battle of Waterloo, the Duke of Wellington’s number two man, Lord Uxbridge went to him to find out what the morning’s battle plan was. In the event Duke Wellington died, Lord Uxbridge wanted to be ready. However, Duke Wellington answered his query with another. He asked, “Who will attack the first tomorrow — I or Bonaparte?” Uxbridge knowingly answered that Bonaparte would definitely attack first. To this, Wellington replied, “Well, Bonaparte has not given me any idea of his projects; and as my plans will depend upon his, how can you expect me to tell you what mine are?”
Now, don’t misunderstand. Wellington was an accomplished military strategist. He didn’t come to his position and authority saying, “I don’t know. We’ll see what happens.” Keep in mind, Wellington defeated Napoleon Bonaparte at The Battle of Waterloo.
The point I’m making here is that Wellington was ready for whatever Bonaparte threw at him. Regardless of wha projects Bonaparte unleashed, Wellington would be prepared.
How about us parents? Do we really understand what our kids’ entertainment is teaching them? Do we know what they’re encountering at school? Are we prepared for our son to come to us and tell him that his younger sister touched his private parts? Do we know how to respond when our child’s principle tells us he was caught smoking marijuana at school? Where would we turn in God’s Word if we discover that our child is enamored by music with sinful lyrics? Are we ready with a correct response when we find out our child has been sexually harassed or abused? To that end, please listen to our TLP Snippet number 11, entitled, “How to Parent a ‘Me Too.’”
We must be ready in season and out of season.
But, number three, we also need to reprove our children. This is another Greek word that can mean admonish. Admonishment is a mix of teaching and warning. In many ways, admonishment is one of the largest parts of parenting. We admonish to help our children stay grounded in God’s reality, but when they choose to believe a delusion we move to number four.
Number four is rebuke. This word means to correct. We provide them the Truth necessary to change their behavior by rejecting the lie and believing God’s Word.
And, number 5, we then exhort our children. This word means to call to the right. It’s an invitation to our kids to join us on God’s side — join us in reality.
I know I’m coming at this from a generally positive angle, but I need to get real here for a moment. Too many parents demand that their children leave their own delusion merely to step into the parent’s delusion.
Please note that all of this is about God and His Word. I’m not preaching to my kids how not to annoy Dad. And boy-oh-boy, let me tell you, I’m ready at the drop of a hat to preach that message. This is not about warning my kids what will happen if they annoy me, punishing them when they do, and then demanding they cut it out.
No, I can’t interpret life for my kids if I’m living in a delusion myself. My children need a good interpreter.
Earlier I told about an adventure I had interpreting from German to American Sign Language. I remember another story about a German couple who had pretty good handle on the English language. They were on holiday in America when they saw a billboard for a charitable organization that read, “We give gifts to children.”
Well, the couple understood every word in the sentence except the English word gifts. The reason they struggled with the word is that there’s a similar word in German that’s also spelled g-i-f-t. Only, the German word gift means poison.
The couple was horrified!
And — needless to say — they wouldn’t have made the best interpreters at that moment.
So too, we must be certain that we’re grounded in God’s reality before we can hope to train our children to embrace it.
Okay, we only have two left, but let’s review real quick.
We will know our kids are living in reality when they have self-control, perseverance, and gospel-centered desire to love God and others.
In order to help them understand the myths and Failure Philosophies of the world, the flesh, and Satan, we must preach the Word all the time, be ready to parent at a moments notice, admonish our kids to live in reality, correct them when they don’t, and call them back to a life rooted in God’s Truth.
And we must do all of this — number six — with, “complete patience.”
Too bad, he had to throw in the word “complete.”
Seriously, though, I don’t know about you, but this doesn’t sound like an easy task. Our kids are having their ears scratched by the world all day long. I encourage you to listen to episodes 14, 23, and 24. Those three episodes were written to help us realize the wicked and damaging myths propounded by the world through their music and movies.
This is not an easy job. And remember, verse four tells us that they may well refuse to listen to Truth and wander off into myths.
And — lastly — number seven we’re called to teach. This is different than admonishment. Admonishment lays the foundation by explaining the blessings of being right and curses of abandoning it. When our children choose to abandon the right, we must rebuke our kids and exhort them to return to the right. And then we teach them how to stay in the right.
What does it mean to be an Interpreter for your kids? We have to help our kids understand reality by interpreting life correctly for them. We have to help them see the destructive threads that run counter to God’s Word. We need to unveil for them the traps that Satan has set for their souls. We should reveal the misinformation and lies for what they really are.
But we can’t do any of this without knowing Truth. We can’t call our kids to reality if we’re living in a delusion.
I hope today’s episode notes are beneficial for you. You can find them linked in the description.And don’t miss our next episode. Our friend, Natasha Crain has written a new book that’s designed to help us do exactly what we’ve talked about today.
On Tuesday she and I will discuss some of the lies your children will encounter and provide you with answers.
And don’t forget to interact with today’s show. Your podcast app makes it super easy to share this episode on social media. And you can find us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest.
And remember this: you can always contact us with questions. If one or more of your kids are living in a delusion and you’re not certain how to bring them back to reality, just send us an at Counselor@TruthLoveParent.com.
The delusion of sin is powerful and seductive. But — as always — God gives us the tools we need to help our children understand God, His Word, and themselves.
See you next time.
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