now the part of the chapter that I would like to focus on is at the beginning there of Ephesians, Chapter 6, the famous scripture on children obeying their parents. The Bible says in verse Number 1, "Children, obey your parents and the Lord for this is right. Honor thy father and mother which is the first commandment with promise that it may be well with thee and thou mayest live long on the earth and ye fathers, provoke not your children not unto wrath but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord."
Because today is Father's Day, I wanted to preach on a subject that would fit in with Father's Day. I want to talk about having the right expectations for your children. You see, today people's expectations for the children are far too low.
When you don't expect much from your children, you're not going to get much from your children. Today, people just assume that kids are going to be disobedient. They're going to be bratty. They're not going to be able to sit in church. They're not going to be able to do the thins that God commands them to do but yet I'm going to go through a list this morning of things that Biblically we should expect out of our children. What should we expect from our children Biblically?
Obviously, in this passage we see that children should be expected to obey their parents. That means when their parents tell them to do something, they need to do it. Now you don't have tot urn there but in Colossians, Chapter 3, Verse 20, the Bible says, "Children, obey your parents in all things for this is well-pleasing unto the Lord." Now flip over to Galatians, Chapter 4. You're in Ephesians. Just right 1 book over you're going to find Galatians to the left but the Bible says, "Children, obey your parents in the Lord for this in right. Honor thy Father and Mother which is the first commandment with promise."
What should we expect of our children? First of all, obedience but not only that. Look what it says in Galatians, Chapter 4 Verse 1. "Now I say that the heir as long as he is a child," and watch this, "differeth nothing from a servant, thou he be Lord of all but is under tutors and governors until the time appointed of the Father." What his is saying is that even if a child is growing up in a king's family, even if he is growing up as a very important person, while he's a child, the Bible says, "He differeth nothing from a servant."
The first thing I want to show you that should be expected of our children is that they should be expected to serve, expected to be a servant, to work. The Bible says in Proverbs 20:11, "Even a child is known by his doings, whether his work be pure and whether it be right." The Bible tells us that children should be expected to work and that they should be known by the work that they do. The Bible says that while they're a child, they differ nothing from a servant. That means that in your house, you should expect your children to work around the house.
There's a lot of work to be done in the house. Why should it all be done by Mom and Dad? Why should the trash always be taken out by Mom and Dad, the dishes, the laundry? You say, "Mom's going to handle that." It's funny because I was getting a new cell phone yesterday because my cell phone was destroyed. I was talking to the people behind the counter. They asked me, "Do you have any kids," because they were talking about Father's Day. I said, "Yes." They say, "How many?" I said, "I have 8 children." They're like, "8 children? Oh wow." They couldn't believe it. "How old are you? How do you have 8 children and everything?"
They was like, "How do you do it? I have 2 kids. I can't even [inaudible 00:03:30]." I explained to them that as you have more children, it does get easier because of the fact that your children should get to a certain age where they start being more of an asset than a liability but if you don't train your children, if you don't bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord, if you don't train up a child in the way he should go, if you don't expect obedience, if you don't expect service, if you don't expect work, you're not going to get it.
Then you're just going to have 8 mouths clamoring to be fed and 8 people who just want to be served, want to do nothing and want everybody else to feed them, clean up after them, wash them and care for them. No, you need to teach your children to serve and to work. Then you won't be overwhelmed with work. A lot of people today will criticize this and attack this. It's a very unpopular thing to say.
They'll look at a family like ours where we have a lot of children. They might see the older children helping with the younger children. They'll say, "Your child, they're just like a slave. It's like a servant to you. You're working that child into the ground. What horrible childhood. It's not fair," but wait a minute. That's what life is about, working.
Why would we expect the kid to just grow up and for the first 18 of their life, they sit around. They do nothing. They don't contribute. They don't help. Then all of a sudden when they turn 18, just bam, this magical switch is going to be flipped in their mind. They're just going to go out and be a hard worker. No. You know what they're going to do? They're going to say, "How can I extend this childhood more? College."
Then they're going to go to Beer Pong University. They're going to want somebody to pay for it ll for them. They're going to want to have it all on debt and student loan or paid by Mom and Dad because they don't want to work, because they don't know how to work because they've never been taught to work. Let me tell you something. While we're talking about Father's Day, real men love to work.
Men were created to work. There's a word for people who don't like working. Lazy. Slothful. Slugger. We as men should desire to go to work. We shouldn't have to be dragged kicking and screaming to do any work. Today in America, people have become slothful. They've become sluggers. They've become lazy. They've become sedentary where people just have a habit of just sitting around. That's why obesity is on the rise. That's why people are so unhealthy because people don't work hard. They sit around. They're lazy. They sit. You know what it is? TV and video games.
That's what it comes down to. We shouldn't just let our children sit. First of all, I don't let my children watch TV, period, but if you're going to sit there and let your kid just spend hours a day watching TV, hours a day playing video games, while you're breaking your back to clean the bathroom, to clean the house, to clean the yard, to pull weeds, to pick up dog-do's, to take out the trash, you're fixing things around the house and you're working and working and working while your child just plays and says, "Bring me more food. Clean up my mess," then you expect your child to grow up and be a hard worker, it's not going to happen.
Hard work starts as a child. Laziness can start as a child. Being a slothful person can start as a child. We need to expect our children to do some work around the house. If there's a way even to include your children in your job ... Most jobs today, that's probably not really possible but if there's a way to bring your son to work, you should do that every chance you get.
I've had a lot of times where I was able to bring my son to work with me. I paid them based on how much they worked and how much they helped me get jobs done but most job sites would not allow a child to come but if there's a way to put the children to work, the more you can put them to work, the more you're going to keep them out of trouble. An idle mind is the devil's workshop. The more that you can get them to get the experience of work ... By the way, most kids if they haven't been ruined on TV, video games and too much candy, most kids actually like to work. If I said to my kids right now, "Hey, do you guys want to go to work with me," "Yeah, let's go."
They'll cry if they're left behind. They'll fight over who gets to go to work with me because there's an inbred desire in man to work but that can be stifled. That can be perverted when we live in a world of just TV and video games. Then laziness and sedentary lifestyle can set in. We need to expect our children to serve and to work, make Mom's life easier, make Dad's life easier. No, it's not going to make the kids miserable. It's actually going to make them happier because find the most depressed people. It's people that are sedentary. It's true.
The people that are the most depressed are the people who sit around the most. People that are busy, people that are working hard, people that are staying active and getting things done, they're too busy to even decide whether they're depressed or not. It's people when they just sit around ... Even just scientifically, even just chemically, if you go out and work hard, you get a natural high. You get a rush of endorphins. When you go out, you dig a ditch and work and you go out, you work hard, whatever you do ... We have people in our church that work in plumbing. We have people in our church that are electricians, locksmith.
We have a guy in our church who rides a bicycle pedi-cabbing. Talk about an active job pulling people around in a pedi-cab at events? That's what he does. We have a lot of different people who work in a lot of different jobs but I'll tell you this. When you work hard and accomplish something, it feels good, doesn't it? It feels good at the end of a good day's work. Even if your job is not even necessarily that physical of a job, it still gives you a good feeling of accomplishment to finish a job well-done.
You get that sense of accomplishment when you're done but you're robbing children of that when you give them no work to do. You're not even giving them those endorphins. You're not even giving them a chance to know what that feels like, to work hard, achieve something and be rewarded for that. We need to make the kids work, help with housework, help with younger siblings. They're learning skills of how to care for children that they're going to use later when they have children.
They're learning skills of cooking, of taking care of things around the house. We have a bunch of chickens at our house that produce eggs for us that we eat. Honestly, by the time we have bought the chickens, by the time we feed them chickens and by the time we just take care of them, it's definitely not cheaper than buying the eggs at the store. Now, obviously, they're organic and healthy because we're doing it at home.
They're not living in their own excrement on top of each other and in cages but if you were to go and buy the equivalent eggs at the store, the nice eggs, the ones that are cage-free and all that, they would probably be a little cheaper than what it costs us to raise them at home or probably right about the same but, yet, part of the reason that we do that is just to teach our children where food comes from and to teach our children to work because they have a chore every day of going out and taking care of the chickens.
Honestly, the eggs do taste better when you have them from home. They're healthier because we know exactly where they're coming from but, honestly, it doesn't save money but at least they're learning skills. They're learning to work hard. They're understanding that these eggs just don't appear in the fridge magically but that a lot of work and effort goes into producing food. They have to take care of the dog and take care of the chickens. By the way, I live a half mile from here. I live in the subdivision right here. I live in a residential subdivision. I don't have a huge back yard or anything but we have chickens. We do that just in our back yard.
What I'm saying is that children need to be expected to serve and to work. Go to Hebrews, Chapter 12. Not only should children be expected to obey their parents, not only should children be expected to work hard, to serve in the home and not to just be a free-loader but when they get old enough to do anything to help, they should be helping. It should start immediately. By the way, kids, if you're listening to this, you need to start working harder at home. Honestly, your parents work hard. They pay for you. You need to serve them. That's what the Bible teaches, that you will be known unto the Lord for the work for the work that you do, even as a child the Bible says.
It says in Hebrews, Chapter 12, Verse 5, "And he had forgotten the exhortation which speaketh unto you as unto children, 'My son, despise not thou the chastening of the Lord nor faint when thou art rebuked of him, for whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth and scurgeth every son when we receive it.' If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons, for what son is he whom the Father chasteneth not but if he be without chastisement whereof all are partakers, then are ye bastards and not sons.
Furthermore, we have had fathers of our flesh which corrected us," and watch this, "and we gave them reverence. Shall we much not rather be in subjection under the Father of spirits and live, for the verily for a few days chastened us after their own pleasure but he for our profit that we might be partakers of his holiness. Now no chastening for the present seemeth to be joyous but grievous. Nevertheless, afterward it yielded the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them which are exercise thereby."
According to this passage, children should have reverence for their parents. Especially in this case, it's talking about the father. Other places talk about fearing both father and mother but here it talks about the fact that we had fathers of our flesh which corrected us. We gave them reverence. Shall we not much rather be in subjection to the Father of spirits and live?
Let me say this. Children who respect their father on this earth, their physical father, children who have reverence, fear and respect and they honor their father, that's going to carry over in how they look at God because the Father in heaven is going to be treated in many cses similar to how they treat their father. If they're going to be one who has no respect for authority, no reverence for their father, it's going to be hard for that person to grow up and then all of a sudden they're just going to honor God and respect God who's the Father of spirits in heaven?
It's just not going to happen but the Bible teaches that we as parents should demand respect from our children and reverence from our children. What should be the expectation? Look, again, the expectation is too low today. That's why children are turning out wrong because people are comparing themselves amongst themselves. Sure, if you want to go look at what unbelievers' children are like or go to the public school and see what those kids are like, it would be pretty easy to pat yourself on the back and say, "I'm doing a great job as a parent. Look at that kid," but that's not the standard.
We shouldn't just sit there and compare ourselves amongst ourselves. You can always find a kid that's worse than your kid. We need to have a high expectation for our children and expect more from them. We need to expect obedience. We need to expect that they work and that they serve in the house. We need to expect that they give reverence and respect. Go, if you would, into Exodus 21. While you're turning to Exodus 21, it says in Malachi 1:6, "A son honoreth his father and a servant his master. If I then be a father, where is mine honor and if I be a master, where is my fear, sayeth the Lord of hosts unto you, oh priest, that despise my name and ye say, 'Wherein have we despised thy name?'"
In Malachi 1:6, God is demanding respecting. He's saying, "A father must be honored by his children. I'm demanding that respect as a father." We need to demand that respect in our own homes, the respect of children. You say, "What does respect look like?" First of all, when you address them, they answer you the first time. If I call my child and say, "Solomon," and he just ignore me, that's disrespectful, isn't it? Maybe he's busy. Maybe he's doing something else. I say, "Solomon," and I have to find him or something.
One of the signs of respect would be that when I call him, he answers immediately. When I tell him to come, he comes immediately. When I ask him to do something for me and I say, "Son, I need you to go do thus an so," he says, "Yes, Sir," and he gets it done. He doesn't just [inaudible 00:16:26], "Okay," but rather he treats me with respect, addresses me as Sir and does what I tell him to do. You say, "Man, that's crazy. That's old-fashioned. You're a tyrant. You're a dictator." It's called what people have done for the last 6,000 years.
Just because we live in this generation ... The Bible says, "There is a generation that curseth their father and does not bless their mother." We're living in a generation where children have no respect for their parents. A dad telling his son, "Hey, do this," and him saying, "Yes, Sir," is, "What in the world? You're a drill sergeant." They don't understand that that's what people have done for the last 6,000 years. When their father told them to do something, they'd just say, "Yes." They'd do it.
You say, 'What's the secret? How do I get my kids to treat me with respect? My kids are not showing me any respect at all. I tell them what to do. They just ignore me. I say, 'Son, bring me that.' They won't bring it to me. I say, 'Son, stop doing that.' They just keep doing it. I say, 'Son, you need to get this work done.' They just don't do the work. What do I do? How do I get them to reverence me?" What did the Bible say? It said, "Furthermore, we have and fathers of our flesh which corrected us and we gave them reverence."
That correction is physical discipline. The Bible said, "Whom the Lord loveth, he chastenith and scurgeth every son whom he receivth." The Bible is saying, "Our physical father gave us a whipping. We obeyed him. We respected him." Why do children not respect their parents today? Because of this Dr. Spock, modernistic time-out new-fangled parenting that's not Biblical. The Bible says, "Withhold not correction from the child, for if thou beatest him with the rod, he shall not die. Thou shalt beat him with the rod and shall deliver his soul from hell." That's what the Bible says.
Now, obviously, we're not talking about injuring or harming the child but I'm talking about giving your child a serious spanking that they will respect you and that they will have reverence for you and understand that obedience is demanded in the house. You say, "That's not a loving way to parent." No, the parent says, "He that spareth his rod hateth his son." That's what the Bible says. It says, "He that spareth the rod hateth his son but he that loveth him chasteth him 3 times." The Bible teaches exactly the opposite of what this world's going to tell you. You don't love your child if you don't [inaudible 00:19:01].
No, if you don't spank him, you don't care about your child. You know what it shows? You care more about what everybody else thinks than you love your own child. The Bible tell us the right way to rear your children. It says, "If you love them, you'll discipline them." The Bible says, "Whom the Lord loveth, he chasteneth and scurgeth every son whom he receivith." What does it say? Let me find it. It says, "If he endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons, for what son is he whom the Father chasteneth not but if he be without chastisement, where of all the partakers, then are you bastards and not sons."
He said, "If you're not being disciplined by God, you're not even God's son because God disciplines all of his children." Basically, what we have today is we have children that are born within marriage but they're basically a de facto bastard son. They're being treated as a bastard son in their own home because a real son is disciplined by a loving father. A father who doesn't discipline his son, the Bible says doesn't love his son. Whether that flies in the face of your philosophy or not, ask me if I care. What does the Bible say? That's all that matters.
We see here in Exodus 21 just some really stern warnings in the Old Testament. This is under the Old Testament when the nation of Israel was ruled over by judges. Remember when Good set up the system of the judges? They were ruled over by God's law. They didn't have a king but rather God's word was the final authority. Not only did God give moral laws of what's right and wrong, he also gave civil laws of just how to govern society and just how to keep the peace. There were laws about all kinds of things, about financial transactions, about just what to do with thieves, what to do with murderers, what to do with all manner of criminals and so forth.
The Bible says in Exodus 21:15, it says, "And he that smiteth his father or his mother shall surely be put to death." This would be somebody who would actually attack their mom or attack their dad and physically smite their parent, punch Dad in the face or whatever. The Bible says, "He that smiteth his father or his mother shall surely be put to death." Verse 16 says, "He that stealeth a man and selleth him or if he found in his man, he shall surely be put to death." What would we call that, Verse 16? Kidnapping or basically kidnapping somebody, enslaving them and selling them but any kind of kidnapping the Bible says, "They shall be put to death."
Then in Verse 17, it says, "And he that curseth his father or his mother shall surely be put to death." Just to show you that God is very serious about how he feels about children towards their parents, they should not curse their parents. They should not assault their parents but literally today you have children that would go so far as to slap their parent in the face or to say, "I hate you," to their parent. Who's seen it before? There are hands all over the building going up, saying they've seen that before. It's so extreme. I guarantee you it wasn't happening back then. Oh man, are they putting all these kids to death? No, it just wasn't happening.
It would have been a rare thing. It's more of a warning than anything because I guarantee you with a warning like this in place and with parents that are properly teaching and disciplining their children, it's not even going to happen. I never would have dreamed growing up of saying to my Dad, "I hate you." I would have never even dreamed of saying that but I remember being at a neighbor kid's house and hearing him say on my street, my neighbor, saying to his parents, "I hate you." I was just blown away by that. I couldn't imagine that.
How do you say that to your parents? That's unthinkable. Physically attacking your parents? Are you insane? Smiting your parents? Assaulting your parents? It never, ever would have entered my mind but do you know what? I was raised in a Christian home. I was spanked. I was brought up with Biblical discipline. That's why those types of things should have never even entered my mind but that should just show you that God's serious about this thing of treating our parents with respect. Go to Ecclesiastics Chapter 10. Let's talk about some really practical things that we should expect of our children.
Ecclesiastics, Chapter 10. We should expect them to obey us. We shouldn't be just telling them to do something, then they don't do it and we just let it go. How many times do you see parents just telling the child, "Johnny, come here. Come here, Johnny. Johnny, come here. 1, 2, 3, 4." You're like, "How high are you going to go?" We literally heard a lady one time get into the 2 digits. She was into 12, 13. We were in Michigan one time. This lady literally got into this. I walked up to her and said, "17, 18." She was really angry.
I probably shouldn't have done that but it was annoying everyone because this kid was being a monster and annoying everyone. She's just, "9, 10." It keeps getting more obnoxious. It starts out like, "1, 2."Then it's like, "13, 14." It just keeps getting more intense of a number but the counting means nothing. That number represents nothing. It's not like you're going to get 14 swats or something. No it isn't. It's just counting. These parenting books will say that. If they don't obey, it will tell them like, "Tell you kid what to do. If they don't obey, tell them again. If they don't obey, tell them the third time. Then count to 5."
What in the world? This is complicated. My wife showed me a parenting magazine yesterday. It said like, "You tell them 3 times. Then you count to 5. If they don't obey the first 3 times and after counting to 5, then you're going to put them in time out," or whatever the punishment. Then this lady comments on there and says, "Oh yeah, this totally works. I've been doing this. Every time I get to 4, my child comes to me." Basically, what they're saying is now to get their child to obey, they say it 3 times, count to 4 and then the child comes but that's an improvement for them because before the child would just never obey.
This is a great step. Now they can say everything 3 times and count to 4. It's ridiculous. Why not just train them that you come the first time? You say, "When does the training start?" When they're old enough to walk around and choose where to go, that's when they need to start being taught to come when they're called. I say to my children, "Come," and they come. It's like that Roman centurion says, "I say to this man, "Go,' and he goeth. I say to another, 'Come," and he cometh and 'Doeth this' and he doeth it." "I'm a man under authority," he said.
We need to expect our children to obey and not just have this attitude that says, "It's okay to obey the third time." Is that how it works in life? You make mistakes 3 times before any punishment comes? Think about their mistakes. You make it once and you're dead. Think about this. Getting on the freeway on-ramp the wrong way. That's probably a mistake you make 1 time and you die or going out and trying drugs, getting drunk. Those things can lead to horrible consequences the first time. How many times did [Ooza 00:26:43] have to touch the ark before he died?
Don't touch that, Ooza. No, Ooza, don't touch. Ooza, don't touch. 1, 2, 3, 4. Then Ooza died, right? You say, "This doesn't make any sense." How many times does your kid have to touch the hot stove plate before it's going to burn him ? 3 times and then hold it for 4 seconds? If your kid put his hand on the stove 3 times and then holds it there for 4 seconds, ... How many times do they have to chase the ball into the street when a car's coming and you say to your child, "Stop," and your child never listens to you the first time.
Are they going to listen to you when they're running into ... It's not even safe to have your children reared in this new-fangled way. Your children obeying you is a safety issue because sometimes, you give them a command, it's important. Sometimes there could be a wild dog, there could be a car coming or there could be all manner of hazards and things that are hot, things that are dangerous. Maybe they're on the edge of something. You tell them, "No," and then they just do it anyway. I love disobeying. 1 chance. That's life. That's [inaudible 00:27:58].
How many times do you have to do certain things to get fired from your job? There are a lot of mistakes you make at 1 time. Fired. Don't listen when you boss says do this? You do something different. You're fired, especially in the first 90 days when you're on that probation period and they're on a hair trigger to let you go. What are you teaching your children? You're teaching them about a false reality where you get all these second, third and fourth chances. It's just not the world that we live in.
Children need to be expected to obey. We need to have an expectation of our children that they're going to obey the first time. We need to have an expectation that they're going to work, that they're going to serve, that they're going to help out, pull their weight and earn their keep. We should expect reverence, honor, fear, respect. We should expect, "Yes, Sir. No, Sir. Yes, Ma'am, No, Ma'am." We should expect looking in the eye, talking to you and being polite to you as a parent but not only that. We should expect our children to eat what is put in front of them, to eat what is put in front of them.
Now there are children today that are growing up. The only thing that they're willing to eat is chicken fingers and french fries. That's something that everybody likes. If you find the pickiest eater, you can pretty much just give them chicken fingers and french fries. They're like, "Oh, I like this." It's not too exotic for them but today we have people who are growing up and being such a picky eater because they're just allowed to turn their nose up at 90% of foods.
This is the wrong way to raise your child. Now look at what the scripture says. Look at Ecclesiastes 10:15. It says, "The labor of the foolish weary at every one of them because he knoweth not how to go to the city." What's it saying? People that are foolish, they're tired all the time. They're too tired to go to work. They're too tired to do anything. What does that mean? They're lazy.
Then it says in verse Number 16, "Woe to thee oh land when thy king is child and they princes eat in the morning. Blessed art thee oh land when thy king is the son of nobles and thy princes eat in due season for strength and not for drunkenness. By much slothfulness, the building decayeth and through idleness of the hands, the house dropeth through." This talks about 2. It talks about food. It talks about laziness. It talks about the fact that if we're idle, if we sit around lot, if we're really sedentary, our bodies are going to decay. That's what's being taught in Verse 18, if we don't move around.
It talks about people being really weary or tired so they can't go to work. That's a lazy person. They're not willing to go to work and do what needs to be done but in between there it talks about food. He says that we should eat in due season and that we should eat for strength and not for drunkness. What is that teaching? That the purpose of eating food is to strengthen us so that we can do what? Work, so that we can do the things that we need to do. Eat food as a fuel to fuel our bodies so that we can be strong and get the things done.
If you don't eat enough food, you run out of energy. We're going hiking tomorrow for recreation. We're going up to the top of Mount Humphreys. Honestly, part of who's going to make it to the top is going to be based on what they eat tomorrow because if somebody tries to just show up tomorrow and say, "I'm just fasting and praying today," they're probably not going to complete the hike. Maybe they can if they're in just really good shape but honestly, when you try to do a lot of strenuous work or strenuous exercise without eating the proper fuel, you're going to run out of steam. You're going to run out of energy.
God is saying here that you you should eat for strength and not for drunkenness. Now what does drunkenness imply? Drunkenness s when somebody's drinking something just to get a pleasurable feeling. If somebody's getting drunk, it's not just like, "I like the taste of it." They drinking because they want to get that pleasurable experience of drinking. When the Bible talks about eating for drunkenness, it's talking about a person where what they eat and when they eat is just based on how it tickles their taste buds.
Now let me say this. There are a lot of places in the Bible that talk about enjoying food. We don't want to become imbalanced here and just take 1 scripture and run with it. We want to balance everything that the scripture teaches about food. There is a lot of talk in the Bible about how God has blessed us with a lot of good foods that we can enjoy and that there is great pleasure in eating good food.
I'm not saying that we should not enjoy the good things of life and the things that taste good but let me ask you this. Is the primary purpose of eating pleasure and tickling my taste bud? According to scripture, is that the reason? Is that the only reason I eat is just to have fun? No. A lot of what we eat is because it's good for us, right? We all, if we're mature people, sometimes eat things that are not our favorite thing because they're god for us, right?
You might say, "What I really want to eat at this meal is this cheeseburger," or, "I'm going to eat the cheeseburger but you know what? I'm going to put some vegetables on the side also. I'm not really eating those because they're just really augmenting the bun of this cheeseburger," but it's more like, "I'm going to eat these vegetables on the side because I know that these are good for me. I know that I need to get my 5 a day or whatever nutrients from these fruits and vegetables." I love to eat eggs and sausage. I eat eggs and sausage all the time. Breakfast, eggs and sausage. Dinner, eggs and sausage.
My wife says, "What do you want to eat?" Eggs and sausage. She's like, "No, don't say that." She asked me, "What do you want for breakfast this morning? It's Father's Day." Eggs and sausage. She didn't have any sausage in the house. She made [prechudo 00:33:51] which is ... I don't know what it is. What is it? Smoked pork. It's really good though. I had smoked pork and eggs but here's the thing. On the side of that, she chopped up for me a tomato. I had a whole tomato sliced up and salt and pepper.
Now the tomato was something that I don't dislike tomatoes but it was something that is more like a necessary evil in a sense because I'm thinking, "I need to get some produce in this meal. I don't want to just eat eggs and sausage. I need to get some fruit or vegetable here." Whenever I have eggs and sausage, she always slices up for me a large tomato. I eat a tomato with my eggs and sausage. It's just something that I do every time because every meal I try to eat fruits and vegetables at every meal.
Why? Because I just love that plain tomato. I just love chomping down tomato slices. No but it's good for you. Anyone would agree that eating a tomato is good for you. Therefore, there are some things that we eat out of character but why then would we let our children just turn their nose up at 90% of food? I don't like this. I don't want to eat this. I don't like this. Then they grow up. They like almost nothing. Now turn if you would to Proverbs 20, Verse 11. No, I'm sorry, Proverbs 18, Proverbs, Chapter 18.
We need to teach our children to eat what's put in front of them. Now, again, I'm not saying you have to be just totally extreme or a dictator because, honestly, if there's something that our children just really don't like, we will sometimes let them abstain from something that's an auxiliary part of the meal. If it's not a main part of the meal, if it's not something that's an important, intrinsic part of the meal, we will let them abstain but we don't let them abstain from common, every-day foods that everyone in America eats.
They can say, "I don't like anchovies." Okay. You don't like anchovies, fine. You don't like caviar, that's okay. We don't buy it anyway because it costs a fortune. If they say, "I don't like tartar sauce," or just something that's a little more specialized, okay. If there's a few things you don't like, no problem, but when it's like, "I don't like bread," that's a problem. "I don't like bread. I don't like tomatoes." Tomatoes are in everything. "I don't like cheese." What? "I don't like meat." When they just want to take a whole food group and just throw it aside, no. That's not going to work.
We actually make our kids eat what's put in front of them. A lot of times, it's not that they don't even like it. It's just not their favorite thing in the world. It's just not the best thing that they've ever had but if you make your kids eat what's put in front of them, it will actually broaden their palate a little bit. Then they'll grow up being able to enjoy all foods and not being a super picky eater. I'll say this. When I grew up, I was a pretty picky eater when I was growing up. I remember growing up as a picky eater.
I remember around the time I was 13, 14, you start really socializing a lot, it starts becoming important to you hanging around with your friends, you start thinking about the opposite gender and socializing is important, I remember just being embarrassed because you're in situations where everybody's eating and enjoying things. You're this really picky eater. It's not cool to be a picky eater. I remember just making a decision as a teenager. I was like, "You know what? I'm not going to be a picky eater. I'm going to change."
I remember when I was a teenager, I just started forcing myself to eat things that I didn't like. They say if you eat something 11 times that you don't like, you'll like it. I have experimented with that. I've taken things that I don't like. I've eaten them over and over again. Now those first 11 times are miserable but if you eat something 11 times, you'll start liking it, not even just tolerating it. You'll start liking it. I used to hate cranberry juice.
One time I got sick. All I could keep down was cranberry juice. I drank cranberry juice for a few weeks. By the end of those 2 weeks, it was my favorite drink. To this day, I love it. I drink it pure, not even in the cocktail, just 100% cranberry juice, the really strong stuff. I love it. Why? Because I was forced to drink it for 2 weeks when I was sick. You need to expect your children to eat what's put in front of them and not to be little Lord Font Leroy saying, "I don't like this," and just expect every meal to be a ... This is what my mom used to say.
"Look. Every meal's not going to be a blockbuster. Every once in a while you're going to get a meal that you just love. The other times you just eat for strength, not for drunkenness," but not only that. Here's a big thing about eating. It says in Proverbs 18:9," He also that is slothful in his work is brother to him that is a great waster." Now the Bible is saying here, and the other passage we saw, that eating for drunkenness goes hand in hand with being lazy. Now we're seeing that wasting your food goes hand in hand with being lazy also.
Now do you want to raise a lazy child? I don't. I'm going to teach my kids not to be a great waster and to eat for strength and not for drunkenness and to work and to serve around the house. Now what is the Bible saying here? A great waster. This is when your child has a plate full of food, they take a few bites and they're full. Now I understand that sometimes the portion on the plate is too much to eat but have you ever known kids who just habitually throw away entire meals? Food's expensive.
Now maybe you go into the grocery store and buy the el cheapo, cheapest chemical-processed, pesticide-laden, genetically-modified food. You're okay with them dumping it down the trash because it was trash even when you bought it fresh but if you actually buy decent food for your family, you actually buy organic food, you buy fresh fruits and vegetables, you buy fresh meats and produce and you ... Think about it. If you actually prepare food from scratch at home, there's a lot of work that goes into that.
For a woman to go into the kitchen and produce a quality meal is hard work. She should be appreciated for that. When Dad goes out and works at his job to pay for all that food, it should be appreciated. Can you imagine throwing it down the trash? All that labor, all that money, all that expense to buy that good-quality food, prepare it in a healthful way and then it just goes down the trash. It's horrible. It makes me sick to my stomach when I see it. I don't tell other people what to do. I don't tell them how to raise their kids. I just worry about my own kid.
In a sermon I'm, obviously, preaching what the Bible teaches and so forth but I'm saying I'm not going to come to you personally and say, "Hey, you need to do this. I'm going to come watch you in your home and tell you how to do it," because I believe that people have the freedom to do what they want. If you don't want to spank your kids, then don't spank your kids. You'll live with the result. I'm not trying to sit here and tell you exactly how to but this is 1 exception.
Even if I'm at someone else's house and I see their kid about to throw away a plate of food, I stop them. This is my 1 exception to, 'Hey, I'll do my thing. You do your thing." When I see a kid throwing away a whole plate of food, I always tell them and say, "Wait a minute. You need to eat your food." While I'm full I say, "Is there any way we can bag this up or cover this for later?" In our house, here's the rule.
First of all, if our children have too much on the plate, we ask that they tell us that while we're serving them, not get half-way into the meal and go, "You gave me way too much food but secondly, if there is a situation where there is too much food on their plate, then what we do, we cover it up. We stick it in the fridge. When the next meal time comes around, it comes out of the fridge. There you go. That's not what they want. They want the next new, fun, exciting meal that's hot out of the oven but no, we're not just going to throw food away because that is being a great waster.
You need to teach children not to waste their food. They need to eat the crust on their bread, eat the crust on their pizza. They need to eat their food. If it doesn't get finished, it needs to go away for later so that they'll have an appreciation for the work that mom and dad are doing to provide those thing. Another thing was I remember I used to go to my grandparent's house. They had all these little bottles of apple juice, sodas, fruit and everything.
They said, "At our house, you can eat and drink whatever you like at our house," because you know grandparents are more lenient than parents. They said, "You can eat and drink whatever you want but you must always finish what you start. You will not waste 1 drop or piece of it. You must finish everything." We let our kids eat as many apples as they want but we demand that they cut the apple in slices, finish it and not sit there because otherwise we end up with all these applies with 4 bites out of them all over the house.
We'll have 8 apples, 4 bites out of them, 5, bites, 6 bites. Then flies are around. It's like, "What in the world," because they just leave it out. We need to expect our children to eat their food, not to be picky, to clean their plate. This is Biblical. It says, "Don't be a great waster," but lastly this. This is the last point. Go to I Corinthians, Chapter 11. The last point is that we need to expect our children to behave in church. Now this is an expectation that has completely gone out the window today. That's why 99% of churches you go to, they don't even have the kids in the church.
Look around our church. First of all, you've never been to a church our size that had this many little kids in it, per capita. Out of 125 people, we probably have ... I don't know. What do you think? 40 of that is under 12 approximately. Does that sound about right? That might sound ridiculous but look around. I would say probably out of 125 people on a Sunday morning, probably about 40 are 12 and under. Yet, we have them in the service with us. How is that possible? Any other church you go to, they remove the children from the services.
Here's why. Because there's no expectation that a child can be good in church. They literally think that if they had 40 kids in a service with 125 people in it, oh man. It's going to be anarchy. It's going to be pandemonium. It's going to blood in the streets. It's going to be just a madhouse. No one's going to hear the preaching because there's just not even an expectation today that kids can be good in church but kids can be good in church. It's possible. Part of the way that you train them is by reading them the Bible at home. You set them down. You line them up. You have Bible time every day.
Then they learn to sit down and listen but ADD does not exist. ADD, it should be called Adult Discipline Disorder. You know what I mean? It's a lack of discipline disorder. ADHD. Discipline. Save their soul from hell. I don't know. I'm trying to get the H. I don't know but anyway I'm just saying AD is a fraud. It's just parents who don't discipline their kids, hype them up on a bunch of junk food and then don't discipline them. That's ADD. That's ADHD. "My kid just can't sit still." You know what? You make them sit still and they'll sit still.
Kids throughout history have sat still and they're made to sit still in church. Now we at our church are very tolerant of children. I like what Jesus said. Suffer the little children to come unto me and forbid them not, for of such is the kingdom of heaven. We don't have this attitude that hey, your kid better be perfect. Don't interrupt the service. Look, we understand that as a child is growing up, they have to learn. Especially when they're very small, obviously, they have no experience. It takes time.
We're not sitting here, being all strict about it and all worried about it. If I'm preaching and some kid starts crying and some kid starts acting up, that doesn't bother me. I can handle that because I can put up with that distraction because it's worth it to me to have you kids in the service where they need to be, in the main church service with us. I'm willing to put up with that, of course.
We're very patient and tolerant of it but at the same time, isn't it Biblical that children should be taught to behave in church because the Bible says in I Timothy, Chapter 3 ... You're in I Corinthians, 11,but it says in Timothy 3:15, "But if I tarry long, that thou mayest know how thou oughtest to behave thyself in the house of God," which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth. We need to teach children to behave themselves in church. Part of why kids can't sit still is because they watch TV which changes every minute.
If you watch TV or video games, it's changing, changing, changing, changing. Commercials are jumping on. It keeps changing and changing. It's hard for them to focus now on a service that stays the same. There's no commercial break. There's n word from our sponsor. It's just preaching for 45 minutes or an hour. They need to learn to focus on it or how about to pick up a book that has white pages and black ink and just read it for an hour. These are skills that they need to have in their life but yet today a lot of children don't know how to behave themselves in the house of God.
The Bible teaches that they should. We as parents need to expect that from them and teach them. What does good behavior in church look like? Listening to the preaching. Now, again, little toddlers need to grow into this but you need to start teaching them, start working with them and help them get there. What does it look like? Not constantly having to get up and leave the service all the time. Now I'll say this. If you would, look at I Corinthians 11:20
It says, "When you come together therefore unto 1 place, this is not to eat the Lord's Supper, for in eating everyone taketh another, I'm sorry, everyone taketh before other his own supper and one is hungry and another is drunken. What? Have ye not houses to eat and to drink in or despise ye the church of God and shame them that have not? What shall I say to you? Shall I praise you in this? I praise you not." Let me ask you this. Does your child eat on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday?
Does your child eat every single hour of the day? 7:00, 8:00, 9:00, 10:00, 11:00, 12:00, 1:00, 2:00, just eating, eating, eating, eating. Unless you have a new-born baby, that's not the case. Is church a place where people should be eating and snacking during the service, according to the Bible? You say, 'I've go to keep my kid quiet. Here. Eat this." Kids are eating, snacking, chomping and dropping their food. That's not an acceptable way to behave yourself in the house of God.
Now you say, "What about a drink of water? What about using the bathroom," but here's the thing about that. Obviously, there are times when you need to use the bathroom in a service, when anybody might need to use the bathroom in a service. There are times when anybody might get up. Especially in a place like Phoenix where it's dry and hot, you might be dehydrated, especially if you've been out [inaudible 00:49:53] all Sunday and you go on a Sunday night. You might just be really dehydrated and need to get something to drink.
You might need to get up and use the bathroom but wait a minute. What about when the same kids are just constantly getting up and using the bathroom every service like a clock? Every service they're getting up and getting water. Now here's a math equation for you. Kid plus water equals bathroom. Does everybody get that? By the way, do you remember when you were in school? Wouldn't you just constantly just go use the bathroom, even though you didn't need t, just to get up and walk around? Who did that or just blowing your nose?
Literally, I'm not a person who compulsively blows my nose. Throughout my childhood, the only time I ever blew my nose was when I had a cold, had the flu or something but just in life I didn't but let me tell you something. When I was in school, I did lot of extracurricular nose-blowing. Why? Because nose-blowing got you out of class. It would be like, "I've got to blow my nose." Get a tissue. Walk out of class looking around. Blow your nose and doing all that. I never did that at home. I never did that anywhere else.
I did it at school as an excuse to get out of class. If you just teach your kids to just, "Oh, I need to go get water," just get up and go get water in the middle of preaching and, "Oh, I need to go to the bathroom," again, I'm not trying to sit there and say, "Hey, don't ever use the bathroom. DOn't ever get water," but to just compulsively, over and over again, you're just constantly getting up and getting water, you're just constantly using the bathroom, especially as the kids get older, and we're talking kids that are 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, there's no reason why they should just be constantly getting up and getting water.
Think about what if they all did it? What if 40 kids went and used the bathroom in this service? What if 40 kids drank water but you know what? What happens when the same kids are just using ... Then somebody who actually needs it, somebody who has a legitimate reason, somebody who's not feeling well or somebody who it's just one of those times, it's not available for them because your kid is just in there playing with the water, playing in the sink, playing with the soap, playing with the toilet paper, getting more water and just running water through the plumbing, just keep putting more in and sending more out, just a pipeline of fluids.
It's just not necessary. Again, I'm not saying that there are not exceptions to this. The exception proves the rule but shouldn't the goal be for a child to sit in the service without getting drinks of water and using the bathroom? Shouldn't that be a goal or a destination to work toward? In fact, I have in my office lollipops and little pieces of chocolate. Those are for kids that stay in their seat the whole service. Don't come to me, kids, and ask me for a lollipop or ask my wife for a lollipop or a chocolate square if you were one that got up and used the bathroom.
It's fine if you needed the bathroom but you've forfeited your lollipop today when you get up. Honestly, there have been times where we offer prizes to our children at different phases in teaching and training our children where we'll offer a prize and say, "Hey, if you guys are good in church, you're going to get X when you get home," whatever treat, desert, candy or whatever but you know what?
If they got up, got water, used the bathroom and stuff, they don't qualify for that, not that it's just the most horrible thing in the world that they did but because we're trying to teach them that ideally, you come to church. You sit still. You listen to the preaching. You don't get up. You don't eat a meal. You don't just guzzle tons of water so that you have to be on the bathroom constantly. It's just not behaving yourself properly.
You say, "You're just expecting too much." I say, "You're expecting too little." We need to expect more from our children. We need to teach them to be good and teach them to be obedient and not to terrorize because you know what? We don't want our church to be an advertisement for nurseries, day cares and children's church. We don't want people to come to our church and say, "See. This is why you've got to have a children's church. See. This is why you've got to have a ..., because it's just so obnoxious, because it's just such a distraction."
We want to do it right, folks, be a good example and not a bad example. It is important that we expect these things from our children. You say, "You just preach too long." No, it's just you watch too much TV and have rotted your brain. Preaching for an hour is not too long. The apostle Paul preached all night till 6:0AM. One time. Some guy fell asleep and fell out the window. Remember that story in Acts, Chapter 20? It's not that I'm preaching too long because you'll sit and watch a movie for an hour and a half. You'll sit and watch that for 2 hours. You'll sit and watch sports and movies for 2 hours, 3 hours.
You need to grow up and, first of all, be a good example for your children and then let them have an expectation of being good, working hard. Let's raise the bar for our children is what I'm talking about today. Let's expect more from our children. Why? Because we just want to be strict? No, because we love them. We want them to grow up and be great people, not just, "At least they go to church sometimes." I want my children to grow up and be great. I want them to be hard workers. I want them to be great Christians.
It's not going to happen by accident. These are some Biblical things that we should expect of our children. Let's bow our heads and have a word of prayer. Father, thank you so much for the children that you've blessed us with. Lord, I hope every father today in the service knows how blessed they are to be blessed with children because children are a blessing. Thank you for the children that you've given me and all the fathers in the service. Lord, just help them to have a good day today and to get some of the honor that is coin to them for what they do, Lord, just like we honor the mothers on Mother's Day.
Lord, please help the children in our church to grow up and be Godly Christians. Help us not to just have a really low expectation because we're comparing it to a public school system or to what the heathen are doing, Lord. Help us to have a high expectation based on scripture, Lord, not an unreasonable crazy expectation, but just a reasonable expectation of what's doable, Lord, that is raising the bar a little bit. In Jesus' name we pray.