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Parents Are the Most Highly Ordained Pastors a Child Will Ever Meet — 38 Comments

  1. Thank you for the insightful and spiritual post. Indeed parents have a great responsibility to train up their children as written in Proverbs 22vs6. If parents train up their children without relying entirely on Christian schools to do it for them, we will surely have well ordered families. "One well ordered, well disciplined family tells more in behalf of Christianity than all the sermons that can be preached."- The Adventist Home pg32. If we ask in faith, our Lord Jesus will give us the strength to raise up such well ordered families. God Bless You.

  2. So true. Thank you brother William. We often complain that we do not have enough time but we all were blessed with the same 24 hours in each day and we need to MAKE time to have family worship. Thank God My family is blessed with a husband and father who has chosen to be Priest in our family as the bible commands. He might not be the most educated by the world's standards and in the eyes of many may seem antiquated but he maintains that nothing beats family worship. So as priest he calls for family worship twice per day and even though at times we may not be happy because it cuts into our"fun times" we are the better for it. Thank God for God- fearing fathers.

  3. My mother turned 100 a few days ago. She is frail but as sharp as a tack. My mother only ever had a primary school education, but I have to acknowledge that in spite of my being an academic (read that as professional student !), my mother taught me most of the really useful stuff that I know. I learned to speak in her presence - in fact most of the words that I use in every day living are the ones she taught me in the first 3 years of my life. She taught me to pray at her knee, she gently guided me to appreciate a love for reading, she taught me to memorize important Bible texts, she taught me to be understanding of people who are different to me. She was a great evangelist for practical Christianity.

    I left home when I was 17 years of age and have lived in a different country to my parents for the rest of my life. We have only visited one another in the 50 or so years since then, but we have always remained in contact by letter, phone and now-a-days by Skype. My parents remain the biggest influence in my life in spite of my having gained my professional education away from home in another country. I can never thank them enough for what they gave me in that short 17 years I grew up surrounded be their love.

    • Maurice,

      You have a wonderful family history. I am very touched by your experiences.
      From your mother you learned: to talk, to pray, to love reading, to memorize Bible texts, to be understanding of people who are different. All these things and more I taught my son but he has turned his back on God. I continue to pray that he will come back.
      Thanks for sharing your experiences.

      • I too taught my children. I sacrificed geeatly to put them through church school where they were taught to compromise and that drinking, dancing., wearing jewelery and breaking the Sabbath was okay. They are taking a different road now.

        • Annette, I am so sorry for the sacrifices you made, and hoping for good results, you ended up suffering. I am happy that things are better now with your children.

          We can keep praying for our children, Isaiah 49:25
          ..."I will save your children."

          Every parent suffers and although my son is successful, he is not a believer.

          • Jane, thank you so much for your encouragement. I really do appreciate it and it comes at a time when I have a lot of conflict in the family because of my children. I am praying that this year will bring a change for good since the year it did not start on the right foot. I believe that the mothers have a greater responsibility in regard to the children's upbringing since they spend a lot more time with them. I am not here to blame the wives or the mothers for the outcome of the children but I believe as they spend the first few years with them they have a greater chance to mold their characters. It comes to our connection with God and we are at different levels throughout our life and unfortunately not so close to God early in life. And there are so many variables for each one of us that it is hard to much the situation and the opportunities of two young families. The bottom line is that the church is loosing the young generation in big numbers and I pray that we will find the antidote in time that our children on be lost forever. As for me I feel that I don't belong in heaven without my children being there.

          • Emil, I understand your feelings concerning the idea of being in heaven without your children, but consider that God will remain in heaven without Lucifer, once the closest to Him of all His creatures. There will also be 1/3 of the whole angelic host that will be forever gone. Every person born on earth was formed by God Himself and His breath gave each one life, and most of those will be missing.

            From a different perspective, would you expect your parents to not be in heaven if you or a sibling was not? Each person formed in the image of God has a free will. Not even God will interfere with that right to choose, whether wrong or right. What makes the difference? Why will so many families be incomplete in heaven?

            What we need to realize is that every soul will be where they chose to be. In the end we choose for ourselves and no one else. While we can influence each other, whether parent or child, no one can choose for another.

          • Thanks Jane and Robert, I won't give up until the end. As long as there is breath in us there is still hope. I will pray and worship our Maker and Redeemer and in the end my hope is to be with my whole family at His feet as a result of His miracle on transforming and changing each one of us. God bless you!

  4. I not only would like to say amen to what William said but would like to add that you have been blessed to have such parents that actually cared about training their children.

    I come from a very dysfunctional family where such things were basically absent and my life shows the result of it.

    • Hi Tyler,

      Most of us have had a difficult upbringing.

      God promises to be a Father to us, if we let Him, and He can do wonderful things in our lives that our parents couldn't and or didn't.

      God has healing for troubled childhoods for each and every one of us and when we are healed, we want to help others heal. "He comforts us in all our troubles, so that we in turn may be able to comfort others in any trouble of theirs and to share with them the consolation we ourselves receive from God" (2 Cor. 1:3, 4, New English Bible).

      • Jane and William, of course you are right about God healing childhood problems but when damage is done there always remains artifacts, bits and pieces of baggage that follow us the rest of our lives. For instance, tell a murder that is in prison for rest of his life, that has accepted Christ as his savior, that God's healing is complete or tell the same thing to a rehabilitated alcoholic who has accepted Jesus that he will never have to deal with the problem of alcohol again. Those people still have to deal with the consequences of the past, we all do, it is just that those who are trained have far fewer problems to deal with and live much happier lives.

        I think it is instructive to read Patriarchs and Prophets, Chap 56 which discusses the problems with Eli as a father. Other instruction can be found in Child Guidance, p 82 and in Signs of the Times, Apr 16, 1896, par 5.

        The problem is that when the character is developed and allowed to wander without control it develops very deep ruts that are very difficult to correct later on in life. You have no idea how much I have to struggle with just being a decent social human being let alone to be a good Christian. Even though I have made some headway my lack of self control follows me everywhere I go and the battle is constant. It is like running up a sand dune - try it sometime and you will see what I mean.

        To me, the parent who neglects to discipline and train their children are training them for destruction one way or another and that isn't saying anything about the devastation that is left behind through their life and the ripples that eventually find their way back home.

        • Tyler this is why it is so important that parents be aware of their solemn responsibilities, and rise to their calling. Just because a pastor is ordained does not make him a good pastor, and just because someone has a child does not make them a good parent. God bless those who take their callings seriously.

        • Tyler, your writings reveal you to be an intense, beautiful soul. Our Lord's plan for you is unfailing. You were born and brought up exactly where He planned for you. We have too many examples of God's wonderful salvation of His people out of forbidding circumstances. God assures us that "He who began a good work in you will perfect it to the Day of Christ".

        • Tyler, when Jesus healed the paralytic who came through the roof at Peter's house, who was happier: the paralytic(a great sinner) or the righteous pharisees that had condemned both the paralytic and Jesus?

          Who was happier; Simon the leper, his son Judas, or Mary who washed Jesus' feet? (Which was granted the privilege of first announcing Jesus' resurrection?)

          Jesus told Nicodemus; "you must be born again". This new birth levels the field and we all begin (again) without the record of our past being remembered by God. Yes, certain circumstances might remain, such as the prison sentence for the one guilty of a crime, but even in that prison, freedom and peace now live in the one who believes. The thief on the cross died that day for his crime to society, but died in perfect peace and the knowledge of the eternal life to come where no one will remember he WAS once a thief. He will be known only as a Son of God. (John 1:12,13) A new life began that day, and though it's earthly sojourn was very brief, it will last for eternity, delighting in the abundance of peace! (Ps 37:11)

          The new birth changes everything, and even a prison can be glorified with the very presence of God, just ask Peter or Paul. The new birth brings rest from every burden that is surrendered. (Matt 11:28)

          As the hymn tells us; "burdens are lifted at Calvary"! But only the ones surrendered in faith.

      • I really thank God who has miraculously helped me to educate my three children up to a degree level though they haven't gotten good jobs yet.
        When I had just gotten married I lost my brothers leaving schooling orphans. It was so painful but we tried our level best with my husband till we failed until we separated miserably with my dear nieces and nephews!
        We staggered financially to raise money for our biological children - the story is long!
        We prayed for manna to drop from heaven but indeed God is God!
        A niece we had never supported financially and grew up far away with her mother gave us a hand and sponsored 2 children at an Adventist university until they completed!
        The 3rd born, we hustled till he completed!
        The 2nd born and only daughter is supporting
        the 4th and last born - her sibling at a secondary school.
        We're poor but God gives us things for the rich.
        Anytime God can pick anything from his treasury and gives His children! Trust God and serve Him! Our motto "But as for me and my house we will serve the Lord".

  5. To be a school teacher a person has to study for 3/4 years, one learns subject matter, child development, methods of teaching and many more.
    But anyone can be a parent, some even by accident.
    How does one learn to be a good parent/teacher?

    • How to be a Good Parent?

      Here are some things I did as a parent. First, pray for God's love to be in your heart so you can love your children. Read the Bible instructions for parenting and if you are SDA, read Adventist Home and Child Guidance. The best you can, follow the instructions. Give your children time and energy. Listen to them, care about them, comfort them, encourage them. Go for walks, read to them, play with them, have fun and do projects with them. Read about places to explore and visit those places together. Talk about where you went and what you learned. Include Bible study and prayer in your lives. Be honest and when you make mistakes, say you are sorry. Give your children learning opportunities with other children. Do activities together that interest them as they grow older: ride bikes, swim, hike, cross country ski, etc.

  6. We had our boy in our church school with around 20 students. After the first year he didn't want to go back and begged my wife to homeschool him. We found out later that he was bullied by the older kids. My wife homeschooled the two children until the high school when they could not be integrated successfully and had problems socialy. We looked into our Adventist Academys but could not afford financially. I wish that the cost of sending our children to our schools will be more affordable for the average people.

      • Now the last one is senior and I did not hear of any government funding for private Christian school. The amount the church offered to help was very small in comparison with the amount needed. I didn't want to send them public school but I had no choice. Now I can see the results but I pray for them to be saved. I still think that the church should make it easier for it's members to put their children in our schools because this is the future of the church. No wander why the church is loosing the young generation in stunning numbers.

        • Emil, here in Florida, and I believe other places too there are state funded scholarships and grants for kids who go to private schools. I think they have to maintain certain grades. If someone knows more about it than I do then please comment. Meanwhile your situations reiterates the point of my post that the parents influence at home is so important.

          • I agree with you in everything you said and my wife stopped working to be with them and later to homeschool them. We do not leave close by an Adventists school for the last 11 years. The pastor could afford to send his kids to an Academy and the Conference supports the pastor's kids when it comes to paying for the tuition. In our state (MA) there is no support when it comes to private schools. I wished that things were different and the Church would invest a lot more in to our kids not only on select few. Have a blessed year!

          • William I think the comment about the parents influence in the home is totally accurate. We can see on a daily basis what the lack of parental guidance causes. If we broaden our perspectives, the majority of families in large portions of our nation, are semi-dis-functional with no religious tendencies to speak of, let alone family worship. I can't imagine that the crime rate among the younger generations, would not be considerably less with families that have parents with religious principles to guide in there early years. It is left to civil authority and law enforcement to make up
            for the failure of parental guidance. Yes there are exceptions and differences because we are all different with different backgrounds. Compared to the family in the old testament especially, the father was the patriarch, and what he instructed was how the family lived. We live in another world in this century. There is little respect or love, for God or man.

        • Emil, I have been so sad for you since I have been reading all your comments about your family and children and the school issues. William is correct when he says, "the parents influence at home is so important."

          When I was 24, I became a Christian as an unwed mother. My son was almost 2 years old. I made a decision to do whatever it took so that my son wouldn't fall through the cracks and wouldn't suffer the way I had when I grew up. I raised my son completely alone for the first 10 years and worked and homeschooled. I prayed for God to give me jobs in people's homes so I could have my son with me. I prayed and put aside all of my own desires for my son's sake. I knew I had only 18 years at most to be in this child's life. My son was homeschooled until he went to college, and was tested academically by the local school system, because I wanted to do everything out in the open. At first, testing revealed he was behind, which is normal for bright children, but by 8th grade he tested out at 12+ grade level in every subject. If at any point he was suffering, academically or socially, I would have changed my course of action. Today my son is Vice President of an advertising company in Manhattan and grew the firm from 2-3 employees to 20 and it's still growing. Manhattan is probably one of the most challenging areas to work.

          As I raised my son, two powerful parental examples stuck in my mind. 1. Tommy Moe was an Olympic hopeful teenager who got into drugs. So what did his dad do? Took him to work in Alaska and stayed right with him until Tommy cleaned up his act.
          2. Then there was the Focus on the Family founder, James Dobson, and his son got in trouble. So Mr. Dobson moved his whole family in order to save his son's life. To me, that's what a parent does. Do what it takes to save your children.

          Homeschooling is not for everyone and I've seen many parents struggle and fail. Children can fail in church school and private schools. Whatever situation the children are in, the parents have a choice whether they will intervene to the utmost to save their children. Parents have to realize what their limitations are, and when needed, get outside help for their children. It's a matter of priorities.

    • Emil, I know the angst you feel. While I was very successful as a parent, I married when my son was 10. For the next eight years, while my son lived with us, I endured my head elder husband showing his hatred of my son. So my son was very, very hurt, and at age 36, still is hurt and angry about some things. My son has never been baptized and recently turned his back on God, largely due to a godless wife.

      But the good news is his daughter, my granddaughter, believes in God and Jesus because of what I share with her. I continue to pray for my son and relatives. Don't give up!

  7. Think if you can of the one who above all others upon this earth had the greatest influence over the most people. Most will say "Jesus" who died for our sins. But how did He come to know of His life mission as a boy like any other boy? Through His study of the books of Moses and the prophets who pointed back to Moses' books to those who had forgotten them. Moses brought the story of creation, the fall and God's mercy for the fallen, the flood and God's salvation in the Ark, Abraham, Joseph and the Law; with it's 10 commandments and law of types and shadows. But NONE of this would have been possible without a faithful mother who had only 12 years to prepare her son who would spend his life after 12 under the influence of the pagan monarch, Pharaoh. Her faithfulness in those few early years gave Moses a saving faith in God. We all know the rest of the story. Everyone who learns from Moses is influenced by his mother's faithfulness to her duty. No human hands ordained her, yet look how great the influence of her faithfulness upon the world through her son.

    Oh, don't forget, there was no SSNET, no quarterlies, no Bible! Just her faithfulness and God's help in answer to her many prayers of faith.

    Could we say she had the wisdom from above? This is the possibility for every mother with faith. What office on earth could be higher than this?

    I agree with your conclusion William.

  8. How does one learn to be a good parent,
    it is easy, Just ask Jesus to show you and you will be amased at what you you will learn. bless you

    • Chimunya,

      Being a good parent is not easy. It's the hardest job I have ever done. We need Jesus to show us the way through the Bible, books and successful parents. There is plenty of help, but we must seek it. I've seen many parents who didn't seek help because they thought they knew everything and the children suffered when growing up and even as adults. At every step of the way, I prayed and asked God for help and there were agonizing times. I made one gigantic mistake and my son couldn't talk to me about it for six years. It still hurts me to this day. Parenting is full of heart breaks as well as joys.

  9. Hello William and thanks for the heart-rending post.

    I didn't ever think about Ephesians 5:33 the way you presented it and I like how you point out the wife is to reverence her husband.

    My son was almost two years old when I became a Christian and I had family worship at least once a day, and in addition, we also studied the children’s Sabbath School lessons and the Bible together, and we prayed together. For almost four years, we lived with an elderly lady and we all had evening worship together. During those years, three times we read through some Bible story books and we always sang some hymn songs.

    Some fathers and or mothers don't like to have worship and prayer and it's not something that can be forced on them. When you try, it can make for very bad family relations.

    I've never heard anyone express such respect for parents as you have written in this post and especially the ending:

    ..."The ordination of mother and father is a much higher ordination than any priest or pastor, and a child should learn to listen to and respect their parent more than they respect any priest, pastor or teacher."

    Thank you for valuing the role of parents.

  10. Thank you so much for this....I have been in the Adventist church for only 4 years and for the last 3 years I have put more focus into rearing my daughter in the fear and admonition of our Lord. With this insightful information, I now know that I have to teach....preach and live Jesus for my child so that she will know well into adulthood about having a relationship with God. Love, honor and respect for God's word and others starts in the home and will continue with me as Sydney's mommy. Trying not to cry but I thank God for this opportunity to parent His precious gift to me.

    Thank you again for this true understanding of the role of me being a parent.

  11. I heard a Christian artist say “God was the greatest parent that ever breathed a breath and His kids rebelled.” Imagine how Adam and Eve must have felt when their son Cain killed his brother and to see generations of their seed thrust into hardship, misery and death to such a degree that God destroyed the earth after the first millennia. I believe the only way they were able to cope with this immense failure was to focus on the promise of a Savior who would restore everything back to its original state.

    For those who are feeling the effects of poor parenting or suffering from being raised by poor parents, you are not alone. Look around and you will see countless families with at least one child facing difficulties, regardless of their upbringing. How about the father of the prodigal son? Same father, two outcomes. God understands how it feels and He has a plan. Fix your eyes on Jesus, go to His throne of grace and ask for mercy for yourself and your children. He will give you the wisdom to keep doing your best, then let Him do the rest. I’ve seen Him work miracles of healing in people’s lives when they reach up to Him in faith. This is why Jesus came. To fulfill the promise made to Adam and to help us keep HOPE alive until He comes. Praise God from whom all blessings flow!!!

  12. I was raised with parents who sacrificed a lot for my SDA education from 1st grade through college. Once I became a parent and had to make education decisions for my family I chose to homeschool. My greatest desire for my children was to make them happy, content followers of Jesus and then functioning, effective witnesses in our community. In my research the best example of education to accomplish this was Mary and Joseph and the raising of Jesus. There has been no other earthly relationship with greater blessing then seeing our children learn in our home with our family, and close friends, of the love of God and how it affects everything in their life. We had worship and religion classes daily - read through the Bible several times and many E.G. White books. They were always a part of our work in church from VBS, worship team, teaching in Sabbath School, etc. We continue to pray as they are starting to study and work out in the world that their love of God and fellow man continues to be upmost in their lives. We have never regretted schooling our children at home and sacrificing worldly goods and our time to lead them.

  13. Thank you very much for the wonderful insight of parenting, I have morning devotion and evening devotion with my children and it is a blessing. I recommend that it's a solution of mending this world for a peaceful place. Good parenting on the basis of biblical point of view


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