John Markum

Brain-Wash your Kids

I’ve heard many people that I’ve met in person and online who have railed against “religious” people in church who brain-wash their kids to believe the same things. I’ve heard it in movies, sitcoms, the news, and even billboards. Some have declared that my children should get to choose whether they believe what I believe for themselves and I should not try to influence them otherwise.

As a parent, here’s the truth…

  1. Your kids are being influenced. By their friends, musicians, advertisements, facebook, major corporations, the government, and Lady Gaga. All of whom have an agenda. I trust my beliefs and values a million times over any of the above influences. And honestly, I trust your instincts to the same degree when it comes to your children.
  2. Parents make decisions for their kids. My kids go to school, eat vegetables, answer adults with respect, go to church, take baths, and get shots from the doctor. We taught them to do those things. We make them do those things. Because we know what’s best for them more than they do. My kids may not always like school, but I hope that one day, they’ll appreciate the value of their education. The same is true of church and spiritual values (although, my kids love church).
  3. You can’t teach what you don’t live. Just because you tell your kids that God, faith, community, and church are important doesn’t mean that you’ve taught them so. You teach what you do, not what you say. What are your actions teaching your kids? Does it tell them that God has control of your life? or your friends? or your job? or the NFL season schedule?

I am completely convinced that you as a parent are perfectly equipped by God to raise your children better than anyone else (especially the media). If someone says you’re brain-washing your child, than at least they’ll have a cleaner mind than if you didn’t.



See my post on 5 Ways to Make your Kids Hate Church, for more.

Church Values

This past Saturday, we talked about the Values that define our church culture that we want to cultivate on Saturday nights. This is not a doctrinal statement. We already have that. This is more for the purpose of describing what kind of church we want to be.

  • We are for People Far from God. Jesus left 99 to find that 1 that was lost. We are intentionally disproportionate toward outreach.
  • We Speak Life. We would rather be known by what we are for, rather than by what we’re against.
  • Found People, Find People. We embody the mission of God to our world, not just on the weekends.
  • We Lead the way in Generosity. We can’t out-give God, but that doesn’t stop us from trying.
  • Faith is an Action. We were saved to serve, not saved to sit.
  • We Belong to a Family. We are each a part of a whole.
  • Nothing worthwhile is Ever Easy/Nothing is Hard for God. We live in audacious faith and trust God to do the impossible.

Most of these statements are already a part of our language, it just feels like it’s time to unite behind these Values together. Expect to see and hear these often. God is working in His church!



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