This Sunday AM we will have the opportunity to celebrate a “parent/child” dedication as part of our morning service. Though we will be doing this for one child this Sunday, it provides a wonderful opportunity for all parents to reflect on their responsibility before the Lord in their parenting.
This element in our service will look something like the following:
Psalm 127:3 states that children are a gift from the Lord. We recognise this to be true here at Rolleston Baptist Church and are so very thankful for the children God has given to our church family.
3 Behold, children are a heritage from the LORD, the fruit of the womb a reward. (Psa 127:3 ESV)
Yet, we also recognise that children are primarily a gift to the parents and with this wonderful gift comes tremendous responsibilities. In this same Psalm, Psalm 127:1-2 we are reminded of our need to utterly depend upon the Lord for all of our family’s needs.
Unless the LORD builds the house, those who build it labor in vain. Unless the LORD watches over the city, the watchman stays awake in vain. 2 It is in vain that you rise up early and go late to rest, eating the bread of anxious toil; for he gives to his beloved sleep. (Psa 127:1-2 ESV)
This is further outlined in Deut. 6:6,7 & Eph. 4:4 (among other places) where we see God commissioning parents with the great task of bring up their children in the fear of the Lord.
6 And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. 7 You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. (Deu 6:6-7 ESV)
4 Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord. (Eph 6:4 ESV)
As a church we desire to help the parents of our congregation fulfil this wonderful calling. So, in many ways this morning we are not only dedicating __________ (Child) to the Lord but equally ______ (Dad) and _______ (Mum) as they endeavour to parent _______ (Child) (along with _________ (if other children)) according to the Word of God.
I’m going to ask _______ (Dad) and ________ (Mum) now a few questions now as an opportunity to confirm publicly their commitment before the Lord this day.
- Do you today recognise _______ (Child) as a gift from God and give heartfelt thanks for God’s blessing?
- Do you now dedicate ________ (Child) to the Lord who gave him to you, surrendering all worldly claims upon him in the hope that they will belong wholly to God?
- Do you pledge as parents that, with God’s fatherly help, you will bring up your children in the discipline and instruction of the Lord, making every reasonable effort, with patience and love, to build the Word of God, the character of Christ and the joy of the Lord into their lives?
- Do you promise to provide, through God’s blessing, for the physical, emotional, intellectual and spiritual needs of your children, looking to your own heavenly Father for the wisdom, love and strength to serve them and not use them?
- Do you promise, God helping you, to make it your regular prayer that, by God’s grace, your children will come to trust in Jesus Christ alone for the forgiveness of their sins and for the fulfilment of all his promises to them, even eternal life; and in this faith follow Jesus as Lord and obey his teachings?
__________ (Child), together with your parents, who love you dearly, and this people who care about the outcome of your faith, I dedicate you to God, surrendering together with them all worldly claims upon your life, in the hope that you will belong wholly to God for ever & grow to love Christ more than anything else in this world.