Be The Parent

NOVEMBER 9, 2014 

Jesus Christ astoundingly revealed God, the King of the Universe, as Abba, Father. The Lord is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in love. Only when we receive His love will we be free to truly love and discipline our children as parents.

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  1. What is your favorite family tradition around Thanksgiving? Growing up who was there what did you eat? Talk about your home growing up. How so Thanksgivings look for you now?


  1. Read Luke 15v1-2; 11-32. This parable is widely noted as the most famous of all of Jesus’s parables. Why do you think this story is so revered?
  2. Who was Jesus’ audience for this parable? What would be the modern day equivalent for each? Who in Jesus’ audience corresponds to the younger brother? The elder brother?
  3. In Luke 15 Jesus is responding to a question, “What does God do with broken, lost people?” What does his response tell us about the heart of God?

“You can rebel against God and be alienated from him either by breaking his rules or by keeping all of them diligently…. The main barrier between Pharisees and God is not their sins, but their damnable good works.” - Tim Keller

  1. The bad son is lost in his badness, but the good son is lost in his goodness. Do you agree or disagree. Why?
  2. How do we tend to use our good deeds to put God and others in our debt?


  1. In Jesus’s day, it was considered improper and humiliating for a man of mature age and stature to run because it meant lifting one’s robe and exposing bare legs. So what does the picture of the father running to his son in v.20 tell you about this father?
  2. Again, looking at v.20, it is striking to note that the father runs, embraces and kisses his wayward son even before he has heard his son’s rehearsed “confession speech.” What does this teach us about our God?
  3. Forgiveness always comes at a cost. What did it cost the father to bring the younger son home? What did it cost the father to go after the elder son and invite him back to the party?
  4. What would it look like to raise your children in the way God raises His?

“Grace is not so much what we are supposed to do as parents, grace is how we do what we do.” - Tim Kimmel


  1. Spend some time praying for your kids and the kids of the Gateway Church. Ask God for the grace to raise our children in the way he raises us. Repent for the times we have responded with condemnation instead of correction. Pray that we may operate primarily out of grace instead of a moral checklist or popular opinion.