Building Future Leaders To Change The World
- by Joel Igene
What is the responsibility of every Christian parent? How can we empower and encourage our Children to make true impact in the world for the sake of the gospel?
It is our responsibility to teach and encourage them. Here are a few tips to help in this mission.
1. LIVE BY EXAMPLE - The mistake a lot of parents make is that we tell our children to do things while we aren't doing the very things we ask them to do. The problem with the "do as I say but not as I do" sort of instructional training is that it could become confusing to the child. He/she has no real example to follow, and when living in a secular world with so many cases of ungodliness, they need a godly point of reference.
Do you want your child to rely on GOD more? Pray with them more often, study the Word of GOD with them, create an environment for your child to ask you questions about things that might confuse them in the word of GOD.
By showing them what it means to LOVE Jesus instead of just talking about it, we might be able to prepare them to do great exploits for God's kingdom (Proverbs 22:6).
2. TEACH THEM SELF-LEADERSHIP - An eagle doesn't need to follow a flock, it soars high regardless of what other birds are doing. As adults, we need to train our young ones to follow the leading of the holy spirit, whether that is popular or not. To create leaders, we must encourage them to be:
• Proactive - Being able to take action without losing emotional control in stressful situations.
• Strategic - Making smart decisions through prayer, careful planning, and excellent executions.
• Resilience - Bouncing back from failures and learning from those mistakes.
3. ENCOURAGE THEIR STRENGTHS - Every child is born with strengths, but not every child discovers it. As the adults/parents in their lives, we are responsible for observing and determining the gifts GOD has given each of them. Some children will have more gifts while some will have less, we are to appreciate every single one of their gifts and help them in understanding that every gift from GOD is to be used for His glory (Colossians 3:17, 1 Corinthians 10:31).
4. REDEFINE THEIR WEAKNESSES - Just as we are to encourage their strengths, we can also redefine their weaknesses. In a world where most people pretend to have it all together, to build leaders, we are to teach them to own their weaknesses and recontextualize it.
There is a beautiful passage in 1 Corinthians that gives us a glimpse at how we should view our weaknesses "Concerning this thing I pleaded with the Lord three times that it might depart from me. And He said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness." Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in needs, in persecutions, in distresses, for Christ's sake. For when I am weak, then I am strong." - 1 Corinthians 12:8-10. Teaching a young man/woman to view their weaknesses in the context of God's strength not only redefines their weakness, but it also builds reliance on the King of Kings.
5. CORRECT WRONG SELF-IMAGE - "Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect." (Romans 12:2).
This generation is living in a culture where people "fake it till you make it," a culture that promotes false self-images, teaches our young men and women that their value comes in what they have, and how they look. It's our responsibility to show them that their identity should be firmly rooted in Christ alone.
When we do this, then they will see themselves the way God sees them, that they are all fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalm 139:4) and that they are born for signs and wonders (Isaiah 8:18).
To build leaders, we must redefine how they see themselves and point their view to the King and savior of all, our Lord Jesus Christ.