Foothill Christian School Blog

Decidedly Academic. Distinctively Christian.

Parenting with Priorities

Written by Chris Lewis, Lead Pastor of Foothill Church


I’m 50 years old. I have 4 kids ages 15 to 23. And the longer I live, parent, pastor, and lead, the more I’m convinced of this:

I’ll never out-parent… out-pastor… or out-lead my priorities. Ever.

Priorities are simply our way of deciding what’s most important. What takes first place, then second, third, and so on.

And we all have them. We have them at work, school, home, and church. They get up with us in the morning, follow us around during the day, and go to bed with us at night. We can’t escape them.

But often, my priorities are different on paper than in practice. What I want and what I do are two different things. Paul says it best, “I do not do the things I want, but I do the very things I hate!”

I want to make exercise a priority, but sleep gets first place.
I want to make good eating a priority, but ice cream takes precedence.
I want to give God priority in my finances, but He actually gets the leftovers.
I want Christ to be the highest priority in my family, but academia, sports, vacation, and sleep overthrow Him every week.
I want my kids to “taste and see that the Lord is good”, but I find every excuse not to bring them to the feast.

What happened? In every instance, something else (less!) took priority. I let the good squeeze out the best. I let the urgent push out the important. I gave the flesh priority over the Spirit.

In the end, my parenting, pastoring, and leadership will be determined by my priorities. My kids won’t do what I want; they will do what I do. They won’t follow the priorities I have on paper, but those I put into practice.

So is there any hope for us? Yes!

If you’re a Christian, you have the power of the Spirit that enables you to overcome the flesh.

You have the promise that “there is NO condemnation for those who are in Christ.” (Romans 8.1)

And when you find that you don’t do what your priorities say you should do and ask with Paul, “who can rescue me?” You can answer with Paul, “thanks be to God through Jesus Christ.” (Romans 7.25)

You have Jesus, The Great High Priest, interceding for you! (Hebrews 4.14; Romans 8.34)

You have all the hope in the world.

What are your priorities? What should they be? What do you really want for your kids, your marriage, and your life? And will your actual priorities get you there?

Let’s make Jesus our highest priority, and gather together this Sunday to worship him.


Foothill Church is the parent ministry of Foothill Christian School. They exist to glorify God by leading people into a growing relationship with Jesus Christ, rooted in the Gospel. They have two services at two campus every Sunday morning. Check them out!

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