2020 is almost a wrap and so is our podcast series about introducing your kids to the REAL Jesus!
We encourage you to go back and listen to the full series. We answer important questions, such as:
Who is Jesus?
What has Jesus done for you?
Where is Jesus?
Why follow Jesus?
In today’s podcast, we answer one more question- how is Jesus better than the world?
He is the answer to all life’s issues!
We love this question because it creates a contrast between the world and Jesus. Our kids need to be informed about the drastic difference between what the world says and what Jesus says.
We get to help our kids realize what the world has to offer and what Jesus has to offer.
We boldly go as far as to say our world is the problem and Jesus is the solution.
See the contrast Jesus makes in John 10:10, “The thief comes only to steal, and kill, and destroy; I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.” (NAS)
The contrast happens because this world is not our home. It’s not the kingdom we belong to.
1 Peter 2:11 says, “We are foreigners (sojourns, exiles) in a strange land. This strange land is actually run by a dark ruler.”
1 John 5:19says,“We know that we are of God, and that the whole world lies in the power of the evil one.”
What is the “world?” How do we teach our kids to live in it without being swallowed up by it?
Are sports the world?
Is music the world?
Is school the world?
Is our work the world?
Not really. All of those things are a part of the world, but they are not in inherently evil, or bad.
When we say “the world” we are talking about a mindset, or a perspective.
The world answers life’s issues totally different than Jesus does.
Here is what we mean…
The world says instant gratification is best.
The world says how I feel is what matters most.
The world defines who we are, not our Creator.
The world says we are judged by how we perform in sports, school, and/or music.
The world looks fun and exciting, but it is actually run by our enemy and his goal as John 10:10 says is to steal, kill, and destroy.
But remember the last part of John 10:10…
Jesus came to bring LIFE and life abundantly!
The promise of Jesus carries weight and power. “I came that you may have life and life abundantly.” Jesus confronts the world with a whole new perspective and promises us that if we follow Him, we will find abundant life within the brokenness of the world.
A great Scripture to represent the difference in Galatians 5:19-23. Look at what the world has to offer compared to what Jesus promises.
“The acts of the flesh (the world) are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.”
“But the fruit of the Spirit (what Jesus offers) is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. Let us not become conceited, provoking and envying each other.”
When we line up what the world offers with what Jesus offers, we see how He gives the answer to all of life’s issues.
For hatred, bring love.
For sin, sorrow, anxiety, and depression, bring joy.
For discord, bring peace.
For fits of rage, bring patience.
For selfish ambition, bring kindness.
For dissensions and factions (disunity), bring goodness.
For idolatry, bring faithfulness.
For envy, bring gentleness.
For sexual immorality, impurity, debauchery, drunkenness, etc…, bring self-control.
How Is Jesus better than the world? We invite you to stop and meditate on the list above.
Jesus provides abundant life for every situation the world creates. He is better than the world because He has a solution for every problem.
Okay, let’s get REALLY practical!
Here are a few examples of how Jesus is better than the world:
Ex. 1: Candy vs. Fruit
Candy– We love it. It tastes delicious but is not good for you (empty nutrition and addicting).
Fruit– It is colorful, taste yum, good for you. It adds nutrients to your body, and it is satisfying.
When we take in too much of the world (candy) our body gets burdened and heavy with a counterfeit version of God’s best (fruit).
We are called to “taste and see” how the Lord is good- not indulge on the things of this world. Teaching kids to see the goodness of what God made is important and helps them distinguish the world from abundant life.
Ex. 2: Grades
If a kid is struggling in school, how do we know when to push and when to release them?
Grades are not attached to our kid’s identity. As parents, we are invited to look at the bigger picture and see God’s plan for our kid, in his/her specific season.
The world says students need to make all A’s. Perfect grades equate to success and future accomplishment.
Jesus says grades are at tool for His Kingdom. Grades help create self-control, faithfulness, and future goodness in the seasons to come. The grade itself is not the most important thing. It is okay to make a few B’s along the way. The win is relational growth and the student feeling seen, known, and loved.
James 1: 17 says “Every good thing is from God above.”
We invite you to look at every situation the world throws at your family as a way to see the abundant life Jesus offers. Jesus did not leave us alone and He wants to be at the center of your family’s life.
The world dishes out a lot of yuck- but Jesus has a life-giving answer to every issue the world produces.
Last (Most Important Thing)!
If you have not already, now is the time to talk to your kids about following the REAL Jesus.
After listening to all the podcast for this month you are equipped with who, what, where, why, and how Jesus is the most important person for you and your kid.
To believe in the real Jesus is to have a life beyond what this world has to offer.
We encourage you to boldly ask your kids, do you believe in Jesus? Would you like to ask Jesus to come into your life/heart?
It’s just a simple prayer.
Jesus will you please come and live inside me forever?
I do not want to be in charge of my life anymore, you are a way better boss.
Will you please forgive me for doing wrong and give me the wisdom to do things with your love?
Some kids feel God’s presence come over them and it’s such a sweet thing to hear them describe.
Some kids become aware of His presence when an opportunity comes up for them to act in the flesh and they act in the spirit. This is again so sweet how they describe it, so be attentive and ready to process the moment.
Some kids might not notice a change at all, so as a parent, be on alert and point out the things of God in their lives so they can become aware as well.
We are praying for you. The conversations with your kids about seeing the real Jesus are beyond important and hold eternal significance! We believe in you!
Ready. Set. Go!
If you have a question or a parenting issue that you’d like us to discuss in a future podcast, email us at [email protected].