Friday, August 22, 2014
I can identify with these PANKs. While I fall well below the income level of the women described in this article, I adore my sister’s children, and I take great delight in giving them gifts. Yet the PANK mentality is dangerous because it mistakenly equates buying things with nurturing.Being childless myself, this tugged at my heart, but more, that comment about nurture as promoting groeth in opposition to making sure kind have "the best of everything" is an extraordinary comment on ministry.
In a consumerist culture, parents must continuously struggle against the lie that the best parents make sure their children have the best of everything. Good parents know that it is not good for their children to have all that they desire. Good aunts, uncles, and godparents know this too.
To nurture is to encourage growth. Those of us who are childless should be nurturing the children around us by encouraging the growth of their minds, bodies, and most importantly, their souls. We should reinforce godly parenting rather than undermining it. We can introduce them to books that will cultivate their imaginations and form their characters. We can teach them songs (both the silly and the sacred should be included). We can talk to them. We can look them in the eye. We must relate to them as image-bearers of God, not as little mannequins.
Does your ministry nurture or does it entertain? Are you more concerned that those that come to church have what they think they need or that they are called forward to a life of maturity in Christ?
The parenting analogy is a strong one. I can think of so many parents good with little kids, not so kid when they begin to think for themselves. The result is rather than promoting the growth of the child, they treat them in a fashion that encourages them to remain dependent and immature. From that comes the spoiled brat of adulthood.
I think the church has the same problem, how do we move from a culture of raising children to a culture of raising adults? One answer Iwould give is have a church that expects adults.
adulthood church nurture