Eminem Parenting? Your one Opportunity.

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In November 2002 rapper Marshall Mathers, better known as Eminem, released his semi-autobiographical film “8 Mile” and its accompanying hit single, “Lose Yourself.” In this song Eminem rhymes, “You only get one shot, do not miss your chance to blow This opportunity comes once in a lifetime…” His original meaning behind these lyrics was his striving for superstar status as a rap entertainer and his determination to seize every moment for success.

Eminem is serious about his calling down to each moment of his life, each beat, each millisecond. How serous are we?

As a parent of two children, do I see that God has only given me one opportunity to love them, instruct them, and care for them? Am I too self-focused, tired, or caught up with other activities that I miss the God-given chance to nurture them in the fear and love of the Lord? Often I’m shamed by the determination¬†of secular rappers in their focus on success in their calling, while I have an arguably greater calling as a parent and I have nowhere near their passion. We must realize that we only have one shot and we cannot miss a beat with our kids!

Tedd Tripp writes in his excellent book on parenting, “Shepherding a Child’s Heart,'”

“You must regard parenting as one of your most important tasks while you have children at home. This is your calling. You must raise you children in the fear and admonition of the Lord. You cannot do so without investing yourself in a life of sensitive communication in which you help them understand life and God’s world. There is nothing more important. You have only a brief season of life to invest yourself in this task. You have only one opportunity to do it. You cannot go back and do it over.”

We have only one shot with our children, one opportunity, are we going to capture it or let it slip?

The gospel is the power of God for life, and parenting.

 

We have an opportunity let’s capture it.

The Big Spill… Foolishness is NOT listening to Jesus

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One of the most important teachings of Jesus for Kingdom Growth must be Matthew 9:17 “Neither do men pour new wine into old wineskins. If they do, the skins will burst, the wine will run out and the wineskins will be ruined. No, they pour new wine into new wineskins…”

After almost 15 years of ministry, I have to say that I am so often foolish because, even thought I personally have made wine and know exactly what Jesus is talking about, I still so often do not apply Jesus’ exhortation. I try to “do” ministry and life in my old way and expect it to work! And… I am actually surprised when in trying to advance my life through self effort, mixing following Jesus with worldly methods, and trying to grow people to follow Jesus without really doing things the way Jesus tell us. My life and ministry become a Big Spill. How foolish!

There are so many ways Jesus wants to help us…

We must jettison Pharisaical-traditionalism-legalistic hearts and lives for grace, mercy, and justice.

We must seek to serve and not selfishly be served.

We must give and find blessing in giving rather than constantly seeking for ourself.

We must love others as ourselves.

We must seek to grow spiritually by following, obeying, and living in the grace of Jesus.

We must seek to grow the Church through relational encouragement and prayer rather than fancy programs.

We must first and foremost seek to be fully devoted followers of Jesus who seek to help others follow Jesus (classic discipleship) rather than synergistic spirituality.

We must… as I am attempting to do in this blog, Repent and Follow Jesus from the depths of our hearts and so our souls will be supple with humility and grace to receive the expansion of the Kingdom of God and His life-giving presence.