Ideal in any area of life can seem out of reach, and it sometimes feels easier to put it out of sight. Part of being a parent or person of influence is to point our children or those we influence toward the ideal, while at the same time navigating what is real. Neither should be ignored, and today we want to talk about that balance!

Start Talking

  • When you think about parenting strategies, which one feels most familiar to you: 
    • The Simpsons
    • This is Us
    • Little House on the Prairie
    • The Brady Bunch
    • Parenthood
    • Modern Family
    • Leave it to Beaver
  • Whether you are a parent or not, talk about who you have influence with. 
  • As a parent or person of influence, what’s something you want to emulate or not emulate from your family of origin?
  • Would you say your parents nurtured your interests or pushed you to be interested in certain things?
  • Think about your childhood. Which did your family prioritize? Relationship (within the family) or Experiences (experiencing as much as you can). How did this shape you?
  • Talk about an Ideal vs. a Real Family dynamic. What is an ideal family dynamic for you?

Read This

  • Why did Jesus often point people with real issues to an ideal situation?
  • Read John 1:9–14. What stands out to you, particularly in verse 14?
  • Talk about the idea that Jesus was full of grace and full truth. Where do you see this in his life?

What Now?

  • Who are you learning from in regards to how to better influence your kids, or those you have influence with?
  • In what areas could you do a better job of striving for the ideal, even when knowing what’s “real” may prevent it? In other words, have you given up on reaching the ideal in any area?
  • Talk about how Andy described Grace and Truth and the difference between  them. Would you say you need to extend more grace or truth toward others (especially kids if you have them)?
  • In what areas are you more geared toward grace, and in what areas are you more geared toward truth?

Additional Resources

Athens Church Preferred Counselors List