As parents, we have a mandate to instruct our children in the ways of the Lord. “Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord” (Eph 6:4). The backbone for accomplishing this training program is through the pages of Scripture. And one of the themes that Rhonda and I found particularly appealing in teaching our children were the parables of Jesus.
When Jesus was here in the flesh, He primarily taught His followers in three ways: through direct instruction (the Sermon on the Mount), by His example (washing His disciples feet), and by storytelling (the parables). Each of these methods has an appropriate time and place in how we teach our children.
In this upcoming series of posts, we will focus on what we learn from His storytelling; what we learn in the parables of Jesus. The parables are a description of what living in God’s kingdom looks like. Many of the parables begin with, “The kingdom of God is like…” or its synonym, “The kingdom of heaven is like…”. And the wide range of stories that Jesus told give us insight both into the theology of the kingdom as well as its everyday application.
I like to think of our families as little outposts of God’s kingdom here on earth; a place where God’s reign is evident. With that picture in mind, I propose we launch off into our series with an eye toward what we and our children can learn about kingdom living from the parables of Jesus.