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Joseph, through trials not of his making, brought great honor and fame to his family's name while the prodigal son (even though eventually reconciled), through his own choices, only dishonored his Father's name during his time in the far-off city. Children are precious, and should be given every instruction to make sure that, when they are tested by the world (as they most certainly will be), they will be able to withstand whatever is thrown at them by applying simple, scriptural truths that they know to be true.
|Format: DRM Free ePub|
Vendor: David C. Cook
Publication Date: 2011
Imagine this scenario for a typical teenager in your church: He's separated from his family and sent to live in a hedonistic, no-holds-barred culture. He's stripped of his spiritual support, left alone, and treated unfairly. Then, at his most vulnerable point, his ego is stoked with power and success. Throughout this rollercoaster ride, would he continue to serve God?
This very test was given to the Old Testament Joseph, whose faith remained rock solid. Yet it seems that our youth are ill-equipped to face the moral vacuum in today's culture. Worse, research shows that when young people leave home, many also leave the church. So how can we forge sons and daughters of faith and fortitude?
The vital answers are found in the story of Joseph. Drawing from this timeless narrative, author Larry Fowler offers a biblical plan for building teens who will love and serve Jesus Christ. Biblically based and up-to-the-minute relevant, Raising a Modern-Day Joseph is an essential guide to raising a generation that can pass life's tests with flying colors.
John then asked me what I did, and I said, "I work for a children's ministry," and shared with him about my work. After some small talk, I asked him, "Do you have children?"
"Yes, two - they are four and one."
I probed deeper: "Can I try a question out on you?"
He was ready to cooperate: "Sure."
"Here's my question," I continued, "What do you want to be able to say about them when they are in thirty?"
"Wow," he remarked. There was silence for a few moments. "I've never thought that far in the future. College-educated, I guess - and in a good career. Happily married."
"Let me ask a different question." He wasn't going where I wanted him to. "What would cause you to grieve if you have to say it about them when they are thirty?"
"Oh...if they are lost." His answer was the first indication to me that he was a Christian dad. After a pause, he kept on: "And if I had to say that they had failed morally, or addicted so something."
I probed further. "Which is the more important question?"
"Oh, for sure the second one."
"Do you know when you have the best opportunity to impact the answer?"
"No, when?" He was now fully engaged.
"Before they are twelve. Do you know that the major attitudes of life are formed by then? And the basic foundations for decision-making are in place before the teen years?"
I could tell I had his attention. I zeroed in for the kill: "You mean your specialty at work is developing strategy for companies, helping them set vision, and you've never thought of having one for your own children?"
"No." He paused, clearly stunned. "No. Wow... No..." He perked up. "Am I glad I sat next to you. Wow."
This Christian dad had never given any thought to what would produce the results in his children that would end up being the most important. I could see the wheels begin to turn.
The Old Testament Joseph passed that test with flying colors - unlike too many of our 21st century youth. His story helps parents and church workers think biblically, plan strategically, and act specifically in raising godly kids.