14 Mar Parenting – Chapter 14
Chapter 14 – Nathan Lewis
What a beautiful and gospel-saturated concluding chapter to one of the finest parenting books available to our community today! Paul Tripp’s final principle is: No parent gives mercy better than the one who is convinced that he desperately needs it himself. In his opening sentence he makes an observation of a known phenomenon – parents tend to forget what they were like as children and how they were treated with mercy.
As you may know, “mercy” refers to our loving response towards a person whose behavior does not deserve anything but punishment. Tripp supplies you with sufficient biblical texts showing God to be merciful towards us, his children. Tripp then writes: “Parenting is about being God’s ambassadors in the lives of our children. It is about faithfully representing his methods and his character to our children. It’s about working to make the invisible mercy of God visible as we respond with mercy to our children.” In other words – mercy is a gospel response.
Tripp’s chapter is full of keen observations. Here are two to whet your appetite: 1) Parent’s take their children’s behavior personally and thus fail to act mercifully; 2) Mercy is not a natural response but one which flows from receiving God’s mercy as a parent. -You gotta read this chapter!
Tripp, as usual, is full of practical points. In Chapter 14 he tells you what mercy is “not” and what mercy “is.” He supplies us parents with 11 action steps displaying mercy to our children. The one of which I have much experience is this: “Willingly confess your faults.” Ouch! It hurts so good!