For the Christian parent today, anxiety can be a constant companion. Beyond the normal stresses of parenthood, the Christian parent has a greater and more pervasive fear: What if my child leaves the faith? Such a fear can leave a parent sleepless and consumed with worry. Even if all appears to be going well as the child transitions from childhood to young adulthood, this anxiety clings to the soul, like an unwelcome guest who simply will not leave the house.
The Two Goals of the Christian Parent
What can a Christian parent do? Is there a secret to raising children to be faithful Christians? While there is no one formula that magically produces a Christian offspring, there are some things to keep in consideration that might ease the fears that linger in the background throughout what should be the best years of a parent’s life.
Raising Christian children actually involves two related, but distinct, goals. The first is the same as for any parent: forming children into well-adjusted and mature adults. The second is particular to the Christian parent: helping children to make the Christian faith their own. Paradoxically, focusing on the latter goal will often result in both goals falling short, whereas focusing on the former can make it more likely that both will be achieved.