Most of us are assuming that parents are doing a good job and many parents are. But we also recognize the world has changed. There are two factors that make parenting especially challenging today. The first factor is that many more competitors have emerged to assume the parent’s role. Some of these competitors really don’t care what happens to our kids. They can bully them, misinform them, molest them, tantalize them, cause them to become addicted, exploit them, use them, break them down, cause them to lose their faith, damage their lives for decades. All these competitors want is our kids’ allegiance, their money, their bodies, their minds, their hearts. They will manipulate, and control them one way or another. Parents may find out too late that these competitors’ ambushes actually worked.

The second factor is that parents now live in a fast paced world. Do they really have the time or give the time to effectively parent their child the way that is needed? Martin Luther declared, “Most certainly father and mother are apostles, bishops and priests to their children, if they make them acquainted with the gospel. In short, there is no greater or nobler authority on earth than that of parents over their children, for this authority is both spiritual and temporal.” Who can really make the difference for parents and stand with them? Ephesians 4:11-12 gives us the answer. It is the church, its pastors and teachers who are to equip the people (In this case parents and grandparents) for their vital home ministries. It is within the family that growing children will become prepared and ready to meet the smooth-talking connivers who want to take them down. Family adults like parents and grandparents are the frontline ministers of every congregation. Fathers are pointed out in Ephesians 6:4 as the key people to bring up their children in the discipline and instruction of the Lord. The battle will rage and the day will come when all of Ephesians 6:10-20 will be needed.

This presentation believes God is ready and willing to empower congregations and families to do what is needed to keep their young people safe. It will take work, real preparation. Parents Arise not only has ferreted out the many weapons and skills needed but through books and trainings is ready to assist pastors, congregations, parents and grandparents to truly be and do what God’s high calling is asking us to fulfill. Some of the skills needed are pointed to in cartoon form on YouTube.

Pastor Al Erickson Bio

Al Erickson grew up in Glendive, Montana where he needed few street smarts. He attended Concordia College and Luther Seminary, he interned in Steven Point, Wisconsin. He was a missionary and seminary principal in Papua New Guinea over a 12 year period. Afterwards, he served Trinity Lutheran in Mott, ND for seven years. From there he volunteered on the streets of Hollywood, California and was an interim pastor at an African American congregation in south central Los Angeles. He started an inner city Grassroots Ministry in Minneapolis and lived there for fourteen years. He also founded Adults Saving Kids serving as its director for fourteen years. He and his wife, Ina, from Carlos, Minnesota have six children and fifteen grandchildren. A family tragedy helped him see how easily vulnerable kids can be drawn into different traps that will change the course of their lives. He has since sought to assist the church as to what can be done in Christ with weapons God has provided and powerful tools originating in God that certain people have uncovered.

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