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Friday, August 19, 2005

Children: A Captive Audience!

Today I read a fellow Christian blogger's reflections about the movie Million Dollar Baby. Apologies for any spoiler, but from a Christian perspective, it's not so great a movie anyhow. Here's an excerpt that caught my eye, and was the main point of the post:
Frankie Dunn's priest had 23 years to share the gospel with Frankie....more than enough time to help shape at least a beginner's world view according to Christ, don't you think? And had the priest done his job, Maggie's request to Frank [to help her end her life because she'd become paraplegic] would surely have triggered the truth so that he would have been able to understand it more clearly. And then Frankie would have had multiple opportunities, as he sat by her hospital bed hour after hour, day after day, to share the gospel with her, redeeming her own world view.
What's notable about the post, and as it relates to Lois' blog entry below, is how the blogger noted how after some twenty-plus years of service as Clint Eastwood's would-be pastor, the Catholic priest has failed to convey the gospel to him in any useful fashion. Notwithstanding errors of the Catholic church at large, this is certainly pressing on my own heart as a minister (in the broadest sense) of the gospel and as a father. How many years should it take to convey the most basic Christ-centered world view to someone?

Well, God has given us parents about as captive an audience as possible: our very own children. So after reading Lois' post, it's a good reminder to me that as a father, the best measure of how well I've done as an ambassador of the gospel (only secondary to my role as a recipient of the gospel) is how well I've conveyed its message to my own children. May my children in 23 years never say, "Dad, I don't really see how the gospel is relevant to life at all." May the Lord give us grace as parents to preach the gospel in a million different ways, so that our children may see that our desire is not merely to mold them into “good citizens,” but rather, to show them how they may become “citizens of heaven!”