Why Every Father Must Prioritize Ministry to His Children
Fathers, like all Christians, are called to advance the gospel and make disciples. But as any father knows, this is no small task. It’s challenging and time-consuming work that isn’t always easy. Every Christian has a responsibility to disciple others, but fathers have an even more specific responsibility to disciple their children. Scripture commands fathers to train up their children in the ways of the Lord (see Ephesians 6:4). As parents, we must take this command seriously and seek to invest our time in raising Godly children who will go on to disciple others. But making disciples of your kids can be very difficult when you have competing priorities and finite time as a parent. There are many things you need to observe or pay attention to as a father if you want them to grow spiritually in whatever area you are mentoring them towards that end. Let’s take a look at why every father must prioritize ministry to his children:
Be a role model.
Fathers are important role models for their children, so you need to be intentional about your parenting and try to be the kind of dad you’d want your children to be. So what does it mean to be a role model for your kids? It means showing them by your actions the type of person you want them to be. This article on how to love your children is a practical way to do just that…minister to your children. It means being selfless, kind, and generous. It means being patient and compassionate. It means giving of yourself to others, including your children. It means leading with integrity and demonstrating trustworthiness. It means being someone your children can look up to. Role modeling may be the most important way a father can disciple his children. When children see their parents putting the gospel into practice in their daily lives, they are much more likely to embrace the faith themselves. Kids are more likely to be inspired by the gospel when they see it lived out in their parents’ lives. They’re also more likely to be introduced to the gospel when they see it modeled by their parents.
Train your children in the Scriptures.
Discipleship is not just about the present but also the future. As a father, you want to help your kids get ready for the future. One way to do this is by helping them to understand and grow in their relationship with the Lord. You can do this in a couple of ways. First, you can pray with your kids and help them to grow in their prayer life. Second, you can read Scripture with them and help them to understand and apply the Word of God. Another way to train your children in the Scriptures is through mentoring, though this may be more applicable to older children or teens who are already thinking about serving the Lord in ministry. Mentoring is simply helping someone else to grow and mature in their faith.
Disciple your children in their uniqueness.
As a father, you have a unique relationship with each of your children. You know them, their personalities, and their gifts better than anyone else. When mentoring your children, you want to help them to discover and cultivate their unique callings and gifts. You want to help them to discover their areas of giftedness and find a way to use those gifts to serve the Lord. In doing so, you are helping your children to grow in their relationship with the Lord and be prepared for the future. You are helping them to walk in their identity as Christ’s disciples.
Help them discern their vocation.
Discerning one’s vocation is an important aspect of Christian discipleship. It’s when one begins to discern the particular ways in which God is leading them. Discipleship can look different for different people. One person may be called to marriage while another to single life or the workforce. Your children may have a sense of their vocation and call from God, but they may not be able to discern it on their own. You can help them to discern their callings in a couple of ways. You can pray with them and ask God to reveal their callings to them. You can also help them to identify God’s gifts in their lives and look at how God has been leading them in their lives.
As a father, you are called to advance the gospel and make disciples. But this is no small task. It’s challenging and time-consuming work that isn’t always easy. Every Christian has a responsibility to disciple others, but fathers have an even more specific responsibility to disciple their children. Scripture commands fathers to train up their children in the ways of the Lord (see Ephesians 6:4). As parents, we must take this command seriously and seek to invest our time in raising godly children who will go on to disciple others. But making disciples of your kids can be very difficult when you have competing priorities and finite time as a parent. There are many things you need to observe or pay attention to as a father if you want your children to grow spiritually. For a father, the most important thing is to spend time with your family. It is better to spend quality time with your family than to spend a lot of time with them. It is also advisable to pray with your family. In this way, you can be a good role model for your children, train them in the Scriptures, and disciple them in their uniqueness. You can also help them to discern their vocation, which is an important part of Christian discipleship.