Perhaps you don’t really struggle with the idea of doing the parenting suggestions you find here, but still don’t feel motivated to put them into practice. Or perhaps you regularly do some of the things suggested, but more from a secular perspective. Or maybe you even try to talk about God with your kids, but your heart isn’t in it. The issue may not be Christian parenting as much as it is that you may have lost your personal passion for following Christ.
It happens to all of us I think from time to time. Whether your life has been so crazy you don’t have time to think, your kids have been so sick you haven’t attended a worship service in a month or you are so tired you fall asleep every time you try to pray – the passion for Christ is just gone.
Oh you still believe in him, worship him and want to follow him, but you just can’t muster the energy to share your faith on a daily basis with your kids. You see that’s what Christian parenting really boils down to…a constant 24/7 faith sharing exercise (or discipling if you prefer)- by direct teaching, coaching, setting examples, giving opportunities to practice godly concepts and more. Any professional teacher will tell you, when you have lost your passion for teaching your subject, you aren’t effective or happy.
So if your passion for Christ has waned a bit over time, what can you do to revive it? I wanted to find a resource to suggest and was interested when offered an opportunity to review Ignite Your Passion for God (40-Minute Bible Studies) by Kay Arthur and Mark Sheldrake. I loved the idea of a Bible study moms could do alone or with others and had a set time frame.
First the good news. I do think this book does a thorough job of covering the basics of things you can do to revive your passion for Christ. They not only refer to good scriptures to consider, but thankfully print them on the pages of the book, so you don’t have to go flipping back and forth from their book to the Bible. I also thought their discussion questions were presented in such a way that they would either get you thinking or start some good discussion in a group setting.
This book would be great for new Christians or Christians who never really built a strong base for continuing their initial passion for Christ at baptism. I would have made a few minor tweaks to the book. Personally, I wasn’t a fan of the idea of marking certain words in the passages with various symbols – I always find that a bit condescending. It is such a minor part of the study though, you can easily ignore it. On a purely cosmetic basis, I wish they had made a more obvious graphic distinction between chapters. It was easy to run right into the next chapter if you tend to ignore headings like I do.
Unfortunately, for Christians who have been strong leaders and are just tired, I am not sure this will totally be what you need or want. While it serves as a great reminder to get back to the basics, it doesn’t really address the issues that caused your passion burnout. There was actually one chapter where I believe the authors got off track and starting addressing societal issues rather than the personal issue the book normally covers. While I felt it was an unnecessary distraction for new Christians, more big topics like that might have been helpful for passionate Christians experiencing a period of burnout.
So, if your Christian parenting is suffering because your personal passion for God is a bit weak at the moment, this study might help. Most moms will find it at the very least a helpful reminder of how to reignite that passion and will get them back into their Bibles, prayers and Christian fellowship – usually the first things that suffer when our passion wanes. If you are a Christian leader, you may find yourself wanting more help than this book provides. My guess is though, the reminders to get back to the basics will also help you to a point.
Whatever you decide to do, don’t let your passion for Christ stay stagnant. Your Christian parenting and ultimately your children will suffer. So take some time and make the effort to recover that passion. You may just find it makes your Christian parenting journey much easier.
This book was given to me for free in exchange for my honest review. An affiliate link is included for your convenience.