Don’t live for your children

Posted on February 5, 2015 · Posted in Parenting, Worldview


Living for your children will not sustain your life. If your hopes and dreams are bound to your children, you will be disappointed, perhaps even bitter. If you expect your children to provide the comfort and support that can only come from God you will be deeply hurt. You will set yourself up to be disappointed and crushed when your family fails you. No spouse, no child can provide comfort that can only be found in God. God will have no other gods before him. Your first loyalty must be to God and God alone.

Children who have become the objects of their parents’ worship cannot bear the weight of being idols for their parents. They will become cynical and disaffected. Children who are the means to their parents enjoyment and personal fulfillment will often despise the beliefs of their family and church. Children who have been relationally abandoned in this way will find no comfort in a gospel that appears to be rigged in their parents favor.

These are some of the reasons children turn from God. Perhaps they are even the underlying reasons for the departure of youth from church. Parents, love God, love your spouse, and in love, prepare your children for the dangerous world that is waiting for them. Doing anything other than this will make your faith appear self-serving.  Your children cannot bear the weight of being your salvation. This ugly self-service will ultimately destroy you, your children and your marriage. Attempting to save your life through your children will consume you and them. Do not live for your children. Live for God!

If you cannot love God first, you will not be able to truly love your children. Teach your children, even your toddlers, that they are not the center of your world. God has already claimed that position.


Jay Younts
Jay Younts is the Shepherd Press blogger. He is the author of Everyday Talk and other materials on parenting. He has been teaching and speaking on parenting issues for 30 years. Jay and his wife, Ruth, live in Fountain Inn, South Carolina. He serves as a ruling elder at Redeemer Presbyterian Church in Moore, South Carolina. He and Ruth have five adult children.