Dr. Emerson Eggerichs is an internationally known public speaker on the topic of male-female relationships and family dynamics. Based on over three decades of counseling as well as scientific and biblical research, Dr. Eggerichs and his wife Sarah developed the Love and Respect Conference which they present to live audiences around the country. Learn more about him and his ministry at loveandrespect.com.
Dr. Eggerichs was the 1st main stage speaker at D6 Conference 2014. His speech was titled “Love & Respect in the Family,” named after his 2013 book Love & Respect in the Family: The Respect Parents Desire; The Love Children Need. He discussed how frustrating it can be when parenting kids. He offered 3 key points on this topic, which I am highlighting below, along with a few additional notes.
1. The Discouragement of the Parent
- Kids do not always feel the way we feel.
- Kids can make us angry, bitter and discouraged.
- In scripture, kids are commanded to honor their parents, not to love their parents.
- Scripture also tells us not to exasperate our children, so we must be careful as parents to not let our frustration or discouragement push us to this point.
2. The Disheartened Child
Fathers, do not embitter your children, or they will become discouraged. (Colossians 3:21) (NIV)
- Kids will get disheartened when they are habitually unloved or mistreated.
- When kids are disheartened, they will reject our faith and values, along with our teachings.
- If we have caused our kids to become disheartened, we can seek their forgiveness.
- Kids are free beings, and they will decide for themselves whether to follow their parents or not.
- Dr. Eggerichs made a really great point about the prodigal son story… We would never invite the father of the prodigal son to speak at a conference on parenting, yet Jesus holds this story up as the perfect example of Abba.
3. The Disclosure of God
- Parents must choose to be Godly parents regardless of how our kids react.
- Similar to the father of the prodigal son, he shared examples of how parents raise their kids vs how their kids choose to live their lives as adults.
- Godly parents with ungodly kids
- ungodly parents with Godly kids
- Godly parents with Godly kids
- Godly parents with some Godly kids and some ungodly kids
- The point of these examples is that we as parents do have a calling and a responsibility to teach our kids about God, but we cannot guarantee how well that message will be received.
- However, we can greatly increase the likelihood that our children will accept and live according to our faith and values if we regularly love and treat them well.