Pastoral Reflection 9.13.15
What is a Parent/Child Dedication and why should YOU care?
About once or twice a year we do something we call a Parent/Child Dedication. That name is intentional. We want to emphasize that there is nothing that the baby is actually doing. It's not a "baby" dedication. Instead, it's the parents who are dedicating themselves to teach their children the good news of Jesus.
If it was more easily understandable at first glance, I would like to call the Parent/Child Dedication the Parent/CHURCH Dedication. That's because the Parent/Child Dedication isn't just about the parents making a promise to teach their children the gospel, but it's also a commitment that the people of the church (ALL OF YOU!) are making to those particular parents. Parents need your help. They need your prayers. Here are the commitments that the church makes to the parents in during the Parent/Child Dedication.
Church, as long as these families are committed to the vision and ministry of this church:
- Will you commit to seek God and seek gospel change in the way you live before these children?
- Will you commit to pray for these children—that they will grow to love Jesus and trust in Him?
- Will you commit to teach them the gospel through both your words and your example?
- Will you commit to partner with these parents—holding them accountable and confronting their sin?
- Will you commit to pray for them and encourage them as they face the trials of parenting?
How can you come alongside these parents in teaching their children the gospel? Here are 5 ways:
- Serve with CoaH Kids. With CoaH Kids, we have a legion of servants in the church giving their time to teach our kids the gospel. Through this ministry we're partnering with our parents to teach our children the gospel. It's an important and amazing ministry. (and, single folks, you may end up serving with your future spouse - it's how Megan and I met!)
- Pray for these families. They need it.
- Ask these parents how they're doing with being spiritually intentional with their children. Parents are not always as diligent as we should be.
- Try to spend time with these families outside of church services or community group.
- Be an example. Model the gospel in the way you live before these children and families. Be filled with the fruit of the Spirit. Joy. Peace. Love. Patience. Kindness. Gentleness. Goodness. Faithfulness. Draw close to the Lord and let him fill you.