After years of being single—and only after a few years of being married, Martin Luther said, “Marriage is a far better school of character than any monastery.” (Can I get an “amen” from the married people?)
And if marriage isn’t challenging enough, try parenting. Before we were married, my wife and I had seven keys to raising kids. Now we have seven kids—and no keys.
Your Disciplemaking Learning Community (DLC) at Home
But make no mistake about it: Your first DLC is your home. Let’s call marriage, parenting, and grandparenting what they really are—disciplemaking. And while we’re keeping things real, let’s also admit that our homes are often the last place that feels like a DLC. God wants this to change.
The good news is that you need not be a perfect spouse, parent, or grandparent to make your home feel like a DLC. The moment you begin to try to live Deuteronomy 6:5-9, your home begins to look and feel like a DLC:
“Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commands that I give you today are to be upon your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, and when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates.”
For our family right now, trying to apply Deuteronomy 6:5-9 means reading the Scriptures together and praying with our high school kids before they go off to school.
- It means taking time around our dinner table to engage a short passage of Scripture and to pray together (less than 10 minutes usually).
- It means confessing and repenting of our sins against each other when one of us loses our temper or is less than loving.
- It means having enough humility to laugh at our own idiosyncrasies—and not mind if others laugh along with us.
- It means driving to church together and trying to not being out of fellowship with God and each other by the time we arrive.
- It means learning to sincerely say, “I love you,” “Will you forgive me?” and “I forgive you.”
- It means sitting on the deck at night enjoying a sunset and together as a family literally applauding God for his handiwork.
- It means inviting our teenagers to consider God and his Word when they ask us to go see a movie that we’re not quite sure about.