Raised in the Church not Christ
Colossians 2:20-23 (NIV) 20 Since you died with Christ to the elemental spiritual forces of this world, why, as though you still belonged to the world, do you submit to its rules:21“Do not handle! Do not taste! Do not touch!”?22 These rules, which have to do with things that are all destined to perish with use, are based on merely human commands and teachings.23 Such regulations indeed have an appearance of wisdom, with their self-imposed worship, their false humility and their harsh treatment of the body, but they lack any value in restraining sensual indulgence.
Raised in the Church
The legalistic church I grew up in focused on rules; You had to do this, dress like this,eat this, say this to get into the kingdom of heaven. For a rebellious teen and young adult this was something I had no interest in. It wasn’t until I became an adult started studying Gods word that I realized Jesus didn’t care about the rules. The rules were meant for people to follow to control them. Jesus cares about the inside your heart and where you faith lies by following man made rules; keeps you focused on the outside and doesn’t allow you to grow on the inside.
Playing the Part
Matthew 23:5a (NIV) “Everything they do is done for people to see:
Some people like me inherit their faith; born into their faith but not something that they have chosen for themselves. You grow up learning how to act like a Christian, talk like a Christian and you are honoring your heritage. You are learning how to play the part but never surrendering your heart to Jesus and falling in love. Then, there are those who learn how to be a Christian. They can recall scripture, dress modestly, know the prayers and how to pray. They are simply going through the motions never really committed but just keeping up appearances. Either way, whether they are inheritance or reluctant participants of Christianity; they are just following the rules and not truly serving God.
Hypocrisy in the church
Just because you call yourself a Christian doesn’t mean you are a follower of Christ. Hypocrites, yes I said it, hypocrites is probably one of the reasons I left my faith when I was a young adult. I was apart of a startling statistic about Christian youth; 69-94% of Christian children raised in the faith leave the faith within 2 years after high school. The number one reason those young adults leave is due to “hypocrisy”. When I was growing up I was apart of the “drug problem” that families who pass on the legacy of Christianity subject their children to. I was “drug” to church every week to dress up and show up but never having that same experience at home through study or prayer. My family was Monday-Friday sinners and weekend Christians. When it came to having my own freedom to choose I chose the world and not to my faith.
Raised in Christ
Matthew 23:3b But do not do what they do, for they do not practice what they preach.
Now, that I have found my way back to Christ and am in love. I am making a conscious effort not to repeat the cycle with my children. I am trying to teach them to have the armor of God and learn and know the truth for themselves; so that they may not be led astray. I want to teach them to show grace to others just as Jesus shows us grace everyday. I want them to see that I have a relationship with God and not just going through the motions. Now when you are in love, everyone knows it. Not only is it written all over your face, your acts but it’s all that you can talk about. Children are very observant and they pick up quick. The easiest way to see if you’re expressing your love is to ask your children;They will tell you right away.
We as Christian parents, must encompass being a Christian as an identity something that cannot be separated from us. Not a character we play at Church but a person we are day in and day out our identity. We have bad days as parents and as people and that is when I express God’s unconditional love. I show them how prayer can help you in times of stress, forgiveness, as well as, times to rejoice and praise. I am determined to give my girls the tools they need so that they do no become a statistic.
As we live our lives as Christian parents are we showing our love for God?