Scripture Passage: Proverbs 1:7-9
Psalm 112:2 says, “His descendants will be mighty on earth; the generation of the upright will be blessed.”
As parents, our chief desire for our children should be that they love God and honor Him with their lives. The Book of Proverbs is full of wisdom for those who want to raise kids that count in the cause of Christ.
We must first give them an example: “My son, hear the instruction of your father, and do not forsake the law of your mother…” (Proverbs 1:8). Our children will learn more from our lifestyle than they will learn from our words. Good character is not so much taught as it is caught; it must be demonstrated through us.
Second, we should give our children unconditional love, regardless of their misbehavior. This doesn’t mean we give them everything they want. True love is not giving children what they want, but rather, what they need.
We must give our children constant encouragement. There’s a difference between praise and encouragement. Praise focuses on the accomplishments of the child, while encouragement focuses on the actual child.
Our children need to know they are not a sum of their achievements, and that we love them for who they are.
We must also give them wise instruction. Proverbs 22:6 says, “Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it.” When we teach our children Scripture, it should be joined with training, so they can learn how to apply it for themselves when they are grown.
We should also give them reasonable restrictions. Adrian Rogers says, “Limitations don’t bind the child; really they set him free.” When we establish restrictions, our children will naturally push against them. If the restrictions give, our children will lack confidence in themselves. This is the reason so many children are conquered by the things of this world.
We must also give them a listening ear; be ready when they’re ready to talk, and make time for it.
Finally, give them a happy environment; our homes should be full of laughter, fun, joy, and silliness. Adrian Rogers says, “A vegetable plate is better than a steak dinner if you have love, joy, and happiness.”
If you want to raise kids that count for the cause of Christ, remember to be firm, fair, and fun.
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