“Fear Based” vs. Grace Based” Parenting

Now that I look back I feel that my parents did the best that they could.  A lot of their parenting were to create fear so that I would not have to endure some of the hardships they experienced due to their own mistakes. As parents we want our children to better than us and try to lead them in the right direction.

We love our children so much and we don’t want them to succumb to the world so we do the best we can to keep them away. We teach our children John 3:16 NLT “For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life. Sometimes being interpreted as we have follow Jesus not the world and those who do are bad or evil. We often forget about John 3:17 NLT God sent his Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through him.

Fear and judgement is pervasive and condemning and does not create an attitude of love. My understanding is that we are to be disciples and follow God’s way which is loving, graceful and inclusive not exclusivity and discriminant.

We are surrounded by the lost and as Christians we are here to be a light for God. You can’t be a light for someone else if you are to busy putting out there light to let your own shine; by condemning or judging their behavior, conduct or appearance. Even if there actions are offensive we should be graceful. Rather than looking at what we don’t like or want for our family maybe we should see how we can teach or grow from these situations or circumstances. Maybe we can to teach our children how to be disciples of Christ to that “bad influence” instead of the “steer clear” attitude.The only way that we can do that for our children is to be that example.

Our job is to teach our children to love God and love others. We have to remember Mark 12:30-31 NLT 30 And you must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your mind, and all your strength. 31 The second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ No other commandment is greater than these.” Showing our incredible love for God that overflows to our incredible love for other people. We can teach our children how to be good disciples.

“Grace Based Parenting” it is defined as treating your kids as God’s treat His-with grace. There is a fine balance between teaching them to Fear the world and using legalistic standards of parenting; and total abandonment of the foundation of God by becoming so accepting that you do not create a environment for your children that sets a standard of how to live. Every situation needs checks and balances.

Think of what John 1:14 (NLT) 14 So the Word became human and made his home among us. He was full of unfailing love and faithfulness.And we have seen his glory, the glory of the Father’s one and only Son.  You must have grace but still stick to God’s truth. They go hand in hand. By being a walking reflection of God’s love will condition your children to act within those limits.  Without feeling that by falling short of His grace that the love is conditional on living beyond a level that is attainable.

Try to remember to be graceful with your love because if it wasn’t for God’s grace we would be in trouble. With all the dumb things as adults that we do and the fact that He still loves us. We can cut our children a little slack and strive to be just as graceful. Yes, teach your children about the Bible; set a acceptable living standard but reinforce it with grace.

I would define the difference of a “Grace Based” Christian Family as a family that shows God’s heart,a kind family, generous family, shows kindness and love in all that they do, they serve others, most importantly they are humble. The “grace based” Christian family is a loving family that loves and cares for others no matter what or how they live, they care about others and wants the best for others, they improve others quality of living by focusing upwards and outwards versus inward.

I would define  “fear based” Christian family of fearing or being “sin managers”; by making sure that sin stays away from your family. Versus living and growing from situations where we innately fall into sin. If we strive to have Jesus loves for others, be merciful, gentle, and not fault others when they struggle through temptations, nonjudgmental.

Remembering Christ loves ALL no matter their disappointments, short givings.There is victory in Jesus who is the only way that we will overcome sin and grow and learn. When correcting your children do it through love.


Where are we creating faith in our families?

Where are we creating faith in our families? I ask this question because I heard a sad but not startling statistic which I feel that I was apart of it one point in my life.  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”. I was one of those young adults. I was raised in a very Christian religious home but when I went off to my Christian college about the middle of my freshmen year I left my faith and sought out my spiritual guidance in the world (and got very lost for 13 years).


I was apart of the ”drug problem” that most families subject on their children. 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. Now that I am an adult and very faithful I don’t want the same for my children. I want my three daughters to live a life for Christ for the rest of their life so I was again researching how do I break the cycle.

Where do I create faith? I found an answer through a parenting bible study by Tim Kimmel Raising Kids with Faith that Lasts. This lead me to the word Deuteronomy 6:1-2 (NLT) These are the commands, decrees, and regulations that the Lord your God commanded me to teach you. You must obey them in the land you are about to enter and occupy, and you and your children and grandchildren must fear the Lord your God as long as you live. If you obey all his decrees and commands, you will enjoy a long life. There is one true God and we are called to live in a loving relationship with God.

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.  As we live our lives as Christian parents are we showing our love for God? 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. So, ask them Who is Mommy in love with? If they are to little you’re in luck you can now start everyday showing your child the love affair that you have with our Lord. They will never know anything different and just like the little sponges that they are they too will be in love.

We as Christian parents must encompass being a Christian as an identity something that cannot be separated with us.  This is where our children’s faith begin. Deuteronomy 6:6-8 (NLT)  And you must commit yourselves wholeheartedly to these commands that I am giving you today.Repeat them again and again to 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. Tie them to your hands and wear them on your forehead as reminders.Write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates. 

I think sometimes we rely on the Church to teach our children because we feel ill equipped but we have more than enough tools to set the foundation of faith for your children.  Be in love with God every single day. Talk about him at home. Show it when you go about your day. Pray with your children, study with them, and show them the love. Do all these things and then also go to church.  This will foster the relationship add fellowship and reinforce the things that you learn and study at home.  Faith cannot be taught to our children it must be caught, similar to a cold. Infect your family with faith and love.

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