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Have you thought of the fact that your walk with Christ can please him? In fact, this should be one of the motivations in our Christian life. Though we are in Christ and therefore well-pleasing to him already, we also should be motivated to please him in our daily life. You can see that encouragement referenced in verses like: 1 Cor 7:32, 1 Thes 2:4, 4:1, 1 Tim 2:3, 5:4.

But this drive to please is also in our children. Read the following excerpt from page 90 of The Disciple-Making Parent. I would love to know your thoughts. – Chap

Wired to Please

Why is this motivation so important? We are wired to seek approval. Our young children (and older children) want their parents’ encouragement and blessing. Jesus heard his Father’s blessing at the beginning and in the middle of his ministry (Matthew 3:17, 17:5). Our children, too, will seek approval as they grow older. God desires that they should seek to live to please him.

This is a radical but empowering thought for our children. Our understanding of God is deficient if we think of him as an immovable judge, satisfied but unfeeling. Instead, our lives can bring pleasure to our Heavenly Father, our Savior, and His Spirit. Charles Spurgeon understood this years ago when he stated, “The greatest joy of a Christian is to give joy to Christ.” This is a worldview-shaking thought—I, personally, can bring joy or grief to Christ! In fact, pleasing the Lord is a motivation for our children to obey us. “Children, obey your parents in everything, for this pleases the Lord” (Colossians 3:20).

As a parent, I want to bring the idea of pleasing God into my shepherding of my children. When they are young children, we are training them to obey and please us. But as they grow older, we want to hand off our guidance to the Spirit’s guidance. We move from our approval to the Spirit’s approval. Seeking to please the Spirit moves Christianity from a list of dos and don’ts to a personal walk with their Savior.