Doug and Ann Roberts have been members of Kingsway for 25 years. They have raised four children in the church, all of whom are faithful followers of Jesus Christ.

Given their track record, it would be easy for them to project a “perfect parent” image. I’m grateful that’s not the case. Doug and Ann are quick to confess their parenting weaknesses and quick to share how God has shown himself strong in the midst of them. They never cease to be amazed by the mercy God has shown toward their kids.

It’s hard to spend time with any of the Roberts’ children and not observe a pronounced gift for loving people who either don’t know Jesus or are living on the fringes of Christian community. Over the last few years, I’ve especially seen this spiritual strength in the lives of their two youngest children, Michael and MaryAnn. Both of them are quick to notice anyone who is new to Kingsway and immediately make a point of befriending them.

Whenever I see a family trait like that, I start wondering, “What did their parents do to impart such a contagious love for people?” As a dad, I want to learn from their example. As a pastor, I want to help other parents learn from their example. So I asked Doug and Ann if I could interview them during the parent coaching segment of our monthly meeting for Frontline and Impact students and their parents.

Here are the questions I posed:

  1. How did you help your kids understand the importance of loving people other than themselves?
  2. How did you help them navigate friendships with people who are not easy to love?
  3. How did you teach your kids to share their faith?

They answered each question with wisdom, joy, and an abundance of practical suggestions. In case you missed the interview, be sure to join us on November 19 for our next parent coaching event. After the interview, Doug sent me a list of six resources for equipping children to know and share the gospel, which I’ve copied below.

  • Here is a description of one-verse evangelism with Romans 6:23
  • Here is a helpful description of the gospel as the bridge to life
  • NavPress has published a short tract that uses the “bridge to life” concept to explain the gospel
  • Read through the first several chapters of the Gospel of John with someone who doesn’t know Jesus. Take time to talk about what the sections mean and how God has been good to you through Jesus. The gospel of Mark would work well too.
  • Memorize verses so you can share the gospel spontaneously
All have sinned Romans 3:23 Isaiah 53:6
The penalty of sin Romans 6:23 Hebrews 9:27
Christ paid the penalty Romans 5:8 1 Peter 3:18
Salvation is not by works Ephesians 2:8,9 Titus 3:5
Salvation is through Christ John 1:12 Revelation 3:20
Assurance of salvation is possible 1 John 5:13 John 5:24

Thank you, Doug and Ann, for helping us train the next generation to go and make disciples of Jesus Christ.

Matthew grew up attending KingsWay and joined the pastoral staff in 2009. God has blessed him and his wife, Aliza, with three rambunctious boys. Matthew did his undergraduate work at the University of Richmond in chemistry and political science, spent a year at the Sovereign Grace Pastor’s College, and received his Masters of Divinity from the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.


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