Follow Our Weather Update

The Best Thing You Can Do for Your Children

I’ve been on staff at Watermark Community Church working with students (grades 6-12) for 18 years. In that time, I have observed hundreds of students navigate adolescence and grow into adults; the oldest “students” I’ve worked with are now in their thirties. Many of them thrive after graduation. Their faith continues to grow, they remain connected to the body of Christ, and they contribute in amazing ways to the Kingdom of God. Others…not so much.

Because of my experience working with students, I occasionally have parents approach me for advice. Seeking to reverse-engineer what other successful parents have done, they ask me some form of this question: “What do the healthiest Watermark Students graduates have in common?”

My answer is rather simple. I don’t have to overwhelm them with a hundred things they have to do before their child turns 18. In fact, there is really just one thing that I’ve seen make all the difference. In my experience as a minister to students, the single most powerful predictor of healthy kids is that they have at least one parent who is being personally transformed by God.

That’s it. It’s not a parenting tip or trick. It’s not about being more or less involved in activities, and it’s not about any specific characteristic of the kids themselves. If you want your child to grow into a healthy adult, it starts with being someone who is fully submitted to God.

Hebrews 13:7 says, “Remember your leaders, who spoke the word of God to you. Consider the outcome of their way of life and imitate their faith.” Believe it or not, kids are watching their parents and imitating their faith. Your kids are considering the outcome of your way of life and mimicking your patterns of behavior. If your faith is transforming your life day after day, the chances are excellent that the faith of your children will follow suit.

So what does that look like? How can you become that type of parent? Here are three characteristics of a parent who is being personally transformed by God: