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  • Writer's picturePastor DJ Harry

Parenting – Enough With Shallow Kids…Drive Them Deeper!

I Almost Drowned!

It was a hot summer day in Atlanta GA.  Green Isles Apartment had a community pool that was calling our name!  We rarely went to the pool, but this day we gathered our things and headed out for some family fun!  My mom, who is a good swimmer, was in the deep end of the pool and called for me to jump to her.  I didn’t realize it, but she was giving me a lesson on parenting.

I was nervous about jumping but built up the courage to take the plunge…right

on top of my mother!  She fought hard to keep me above water and eventually someone threw in a life ring and saved us both.  She obviously didn’t intend for me to jump on top of her, but that is what I had ended up doing out of fear of the ‘deep water.’

Shallow Culture / Shallow Parenting

We live in a shallow culture.  Shallow in motives….shallow in perspective…shallow in discernment….with shallow parenting!  It’s almost like we are content to wade in the shallow end of the pool and completely ignore that there is a deep end that offers so much more fulfillment.  Are your kids afraid of the ‘deep end’ or are you actually training them to exist in the shallow water of life?

The process of pushing your kids deep in life is no different than getting them into the deep end of the local pool.  It takes loving guidance, a watchful eye, and the knowledge that they can exist in water over their head through Biblical parenting.  Below I have listed 5 things you must understand to take your kids deeper spiritually.  Would you like a copy of “Winning the Culture War in Your Home”?  Sign up in the box below to receive it via email!

1. Understand the perils of shallow living.

I am convinced that the shallow Christianity comes at a far greater price than the challenges of taking your kids deep into their faith.  Our world is full of young believers that have never been challenged in their faith because they have been coddled and babied.  They are in the spiritual wading pool with the infants!  One day they will be thrown into the deep end through a worldview confrontation and the likelihood of their surviving is slim.  In real life kid drown that way.  Spiritually it is no different!

2. Understand the challenges of going deeper.

There were risks involved in me jumping into the deep end that day.  In the same way, taking your kids deeper is challenging as a parent.  It demands that you stop making excuses for shallow behavior in your own life and go deeper with them.

You must actually put together a halfway coherent Biblical answer before you make family decisions.  It takes time to sit with your kids and walk them through worldview issues from a Biblical perspective.

I can’t tell you how many times we have sat at the dinner table with our kids and talked through political, social, or moral issues for 20-30 minutes after dinner was over.  We were parenting them into the deep end!

3. Don’t let fear of the deep keep you in the shallows.

Are you scared of growing your kids faith and taking them deeper in their walk with God?  You should be!  As your kids are confronted with deeper life issues there is always fear, anxiety, and apprehension.  Talking to your kids about a sinful culture invites discussion and questions that often make parents nervous.Have you talked to your kids about homosexuality?  How about transgender issues?  Do you ever discuss why you make decisions or do you stick to the old “because I said so” line.  If that is your ‘go-to’ answer, you are training your kids to stay shallow!

4. Deep living is learned over time…don’t throw your kids into the deep water!

Initially they sit by the side of the pool at the deep end with their feet in the water.  Then they are in the water, but holding on to the side of the pool tightly.  Eventually they let go and swim along the side of the pool…before too long they are jumping off the diving board and having a great time!  We have seen this played out a thousand time.…it is the standard process of learning to exist in deep water.

Taking your kids deep is a process that needs to start early in life.  Don’t shy

away from deep conversations with your grade-school age children.  Studies have shown that kids have formulated 90% of their ideas and identity by the age of 10.  If you wait till they are ‘grown ups’ you will have missed out on the best years of preparation…and possibly doomed them to a life of shallow living and thinking.

5. You will have to begin letting go so they can learn to swim in the deep end.

My mom had a lot of faith that day in the deep end.  I have to be honest, I think I almost drowned her!  She wasn’t going to let me go under and probably was in much more control of the situation than I thought.  She, however, had to tell me to jump…jump into the deep end…in water over my head.  Why?  It taught me to trust her.  I learned to acknowledge my fears but put them into perspective.  It taught me to manage my emotions.

Kids that are never challenged think that life has no challenges.  Kids that never taste disappointment think that life has no disappointments.  Unfortunately, when life gets deep and the water gets rough, those children – your children – just might sink below the surface and be lost in the deep end of life.

Parents, drive your kids deeper!!

DJHarry            Isaiah 64:8            We are the clay!

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