In Luke 6:39 Jesus asks the question, can the blind lead the blind?  The answer is unequivocally no.  If the blind lead the blind then both parties are doomed.  Typically when Jesus used this expression he was talking about the false teachers that had cropped up in the Jewish world.  However, the principle behind such a statement reaches much further than just the teachings of the Pharisees.  False teachers in the early church, false teachers in the modern church, elders that are incorrectly leading can all be examples of the blind leading the blind.  However, as parents I contend that we too can be blind in our leadership.
When we consider the qualities we look for in good leaders, blindness is not one of them.  In our president we want someone strong, powerful and capable of reminding our enemies that we still have the strongest military in the world.  We want him to have direction in his leadership too.  Before we elect him we want to know what his vision is for the future.  If we are honest, the last person we would elect is not a person who says something we politically do not agree with, it is the person who appears to have no vision.  The fear of the unknown is greater than the fear of what we do know.  Likewise, none of us want a boss that never explains to us what he is looking for in his company, his employees, etc.  We want a boss that happily divulges his company’s policies.  Even banks understand this as they will not just give money to anyone who wants to start a business.  They only supply it to those whose risk seems low because they have a business plan.  They have direction, vision, and purpose.
While many of our society today clearly understand these principles, when it comes to the raising our children, we all of sudden think that haphazardly going through life prepares them for when they leave the home.  In fact, most of us faced the same issues when we left the home.  Sure, our parents may have taught us how to change a tire or change the oil on our cars.  They may have taught us how to fold laundry and cook dinner without burning the house down.  And many of us had parents and/or grandparents that were instrumental in teaching us about God.  However, that does not mean that we were properly prepared for all that comes with being a man or being a woman.  If you ask the average person today what makes them a man or what makes them a woman we would likely find a whole slew of different responses. Some might saw when they became sexually active.  Others might saw it happened when they got a job.  Or perhaps got married, moved out of home, drove a car, turned 18 or 21, graduated high school, or college, etc.  But do these things really define us as men or women?  What I am driving at is that the 20th and 21st century American does not have a right of passage we can look back at and say this day I became a man (or woman).  Some cultures sent their young men into the wild to prove they could survive.  Some cultures wouldn’t call you a man until you could kill the lion.  Others, like the Jews, had a special day of celebration when you were made accountable to the Law.
As parents we have the responsibility to lead our children towards man/womanhood.  If we lead them blindly, where do you think they will end up?  Yes, as Jesus said, if we blindly lead the blind they will end up in the pit.  This means that we have the responsibility to not only lead them with the word of God, but to lead with purpose.  I have myself have already began this challenge, and I encourage you parents to take the challenge as well.  And for those of you without kids out home, I challenge you as well.  You see, as we know, we will not always be there for our children.  We like to think we can be, but sometimes miles, and sometimes death keeps us from actually being there.  As such, our children need mentors that they can turn to.  Christians that they can trust will guide them.  If we think about it, must of us had one of those in our lives.  Perhaps it was an elder, or a deacon, or preacher.  Maybe it was a bible class teacher, or an aunt, uncle or maybe just a good friend in the church.  But we had them.  At times we leaned upon them when there was no one else to lean upon.  Those of you without children in the home need to live your lives in such a way that you can be good mentors for these children.  They need to see in you what happens when you lead your life with purpose.
But, where do I begin?  How can I help my child reach adulthood with purpose?  I encourage you to study this out on your own.  I myself have considered what qualities make a person a good man or a good woman.  I want my children to know what they are.  I want them to know when I expect them to keep them.  AND I want them to know when God expects them to keep them as well.  Over the next couple of bulletins, we will be looking closer at these particular qualities and how we can teach our children to not just grow up.  But to grow up a good men and good women.  -WTK

Grinnell church of Christ
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Leading With Purpose

The Light
Volume 4 Issue 32