GOOD TO GREAT: CHARACTERISTICS OF A GREAT FAMILY
Ephesians 6:4: The Question Every Parent Must Ask (LESSON 2)
“Fathers do not provoke your children to anger but…” Ephesians 6:4 ESV
OPENING: Describe your vision of a “great family.” Where did that picture of a great family come from?
TEXT: Read Ephesians 6:4 from a variety of different translations. (See also 6:1-3; Colossians 3:18-25).
1. According to Paul what defines a Christian parent? What would Paul say is one of the keys to becoming a great parent? Is Paul more concerned about what we should do or what we should not do as a parent? How would/would have your parenting be different if you followed the principles of Paul found in Ephesians 6:4 and Colossians 3:21? How would your kids be different?
2. Pastor Mark stated that every parent must occasionally ask the question “what would a great parent do?” What are some of the advantages of asking this sort of question? How might this question keep you from provoking or embittering your children?
3. Why do you think Paul begins with the negative in Ephesians 6:4? What are some of the ways that parents provoke their children to anger? What are some of the consequences of angry kids? What does it mean to train/bring up your children? What are some of the benefits of training your children in the discipline and instruction of the Lord? What are some of the key instructions that we need to teach and to train our children to follow? What are the hurdles that keep us from doing this as parents?
4. Why do you think Paul only uses the negative in Colossians 3:21? What is the difference between an angry child and a discouraged child? How can we know as parents if our kids are discouraged? When it comes to following Christ what hurdles does an angry or discouraged teenager face? What are some of the ways we as parents can pour life and speak encouragement to our kids or perhaps the kids in our church?
5. DIG DEEPER: Read 1 Thessalonians 2:7-12. In what ways do parents illustrate God’s love and grace to us? Great parents reflect the greatness of God. How does the way we live influence our kid’s perspective on who God is? Finish this statement, “the more we help parents to love their kids well, the more our kids will ”. Read 2 Timothy 1:5; What role did Timothy’s mom and grandmother play in his faith? How do we pass our faith on to the next generation? What role do grandparents play in creating a church full of great families?
6. Parents have more influence on the faith, values, and attitudes of teens than anyone else—more than friends, celebrities, teachers, coaches, media and yes, even pastors. How can we as a church help parents in our church win? How can we help parents in our community win?
NEXT STEP: Ask the question, what would a great father or great mother do? Ask the question, what would a great grandmother or grandfather do? Encourage and bless one or more students this week!