I want to start here. This is not a place to be harsh and judgmental (which is easy in the throes of passionate discussion). I believe that we can have a discussion about these topics and do so in a way that is productive, which having and speaking from an attitude of judgement is not. So, as I said before, let's start with Jesus' words in Matthew 7.
"You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your bother's eye."
Judgement is essential to life. I must deem whether situations and persons are safe. I must determine critically whether my path with lead me to my desired destination. I must observe and think about the things people do and say in order to honor their actions and their intelligence. This means I just pass judgement, everyday. I must pass judgement may times a day, everyday. Judgement is essential to life and Christian life, in particular.
However, "judgmental-ism" is neither essential nor is it even Christ-like. When we look down our noses at people because they are different or "wrong," we walk away from the person Christ calls us to be.
Jesus doesn't say a blanket, "Don't judge." He ends this with saying, "... then you will see clearly to remove the speck..." He expects us to judge, but our attitude is everything in terms of judgement. If we come to others ignoring the sin or fault in our own lives or if we come with a spirit that is demeaning or belittling, we are sinning even further. We take over God's place as Judge. He is the one who determines right and wrong, not us. But, if we come with a spirit of grace and mercy, in order to lovingly help remove the faults in others (faults that we have in our own lives; it's another thing altogether to try and "help" people with things that you have no experience with or expertise in) then we are serving God by serving them. We carry another's burdens and love as Jesus loved.
This is where I want to start as I discuss family ministry. I'm passionate about this because I'm trying to do it with my family. I'm trying to teach my son to love God and love others. I want him to change the world with his faith and love! I know I have messed up and will mess up even more in the future. I want to help other parents learn from my mistakes, number one. I also want to help parents learn from my study in this area. I want to pass on the things I've learned because I care about your kids and their relationship with God, too!
I want to learn from you as well. Help me raise my child to know Christ. Help me as I help other to raise their children to know Christ. Let's do this together, in community, like God designed!
Let's be gracious and merciful while we walk this road together!