If we hope to get parenting right, we must know and follow the vital truths and principles God has recorded for us in His Word. The best parenting starts with discovering who your child is. Amazingly, in the process you may also discover yourself!
Children don’t come with instruction manuals, though we sometimes wish they did. How do we parents manage to raise godly, compassionate children when we’re sleep-deprived, emotionally exhausted, and overwhelmed (and that’s just the first year!)? Can the Bible help us to grow from being merely good parents to becoming godly ones?
Absolutely! Join Chuck Swindoll in Biblical Parenting—A Classic Series and discover a solid parenting strategy for growing from a good to great—and godly—parent.
No matter how hard parents try, children are determined to go in a direction different from the parents’ desire, and the rebellion persists. What went wrong? What’s missing from this domestic equation? Why is the battle so difficult? The problem boils down to the natural “bents” in every baby.
Can we trace certain acts of iniquity back to our ancestors? The answer is “yes.” The sinful “bents” of our ancestors do not stop with their deaths. Wise are the parents who understand this, observe it in their children, and deal with it appropriately in order to bring an end to long-standing familial iniquity.
We know that we are all sinful and in need of salvation, but often, we fail to consider that we bear the specific “bents” of our parents, grandparents, and even great-grandparents. When we think about it, all of us must admit the direct link between the people we have become and the lives of those who formed our heritage—for good and for ill.
Being a parent is one of life’s most delightful and rewarding experiences. At the same time, it can be one of life’s most exasperating and demanding challenges. Parenting works best when we are loving and understanding, consistent and calm in our reactions, and wise and mature in our actions and attitudes. But who on earth does all of that all the time?
While parents need to stand firm on issues that call for a strong hand, disciplining our children must never eclipse delighting in them! Throughout the fabric of Scripture, God has woven numerous statements underscoring the importance of not only expressing but also demonstrating affirmation, encouragement, gentleness, fun, tenderness, and affection toward our children.
Having learned some key words in the Bible that pertain to delighting in our offspring, we now need to think about some practical ways we can do just that. As you consider these remember, your children won’t forget the occasions you make to take joy in them. Delightful memories last forever.
Every family has headaches and heartaches. Because human depravity runs deep, it is impossible to rear our children from infancy to independence without encountering times that call for straight talk and tough love. While we love our children no matter what, parents cannot escape those occasions when wills clash, rebellion reaches an impasse, and things get downright impossible.
Unless dealt with appropriately, conflicts lead to permanent breakdowns in our relationships that time alone cannot heal. If we wish to cultivate healthy relationships, especially with our children, reconciliation is essential. But…how?
Many of us have the right motives, but we just don’t know how to reprove one another the way God intended. In this message, let’s seek to understand the value and process of speaking the truth in love so we might gain—and share, especially with our children—the helpful insight that can remove blind spots and bring about needed change.
Living harmoniously as a family is an ongoing, intentional journey. The beginning of that journey is marked by great anticipation and genuine excitement. A bride and groom have high hopes and great dreams as they start out life together. However, as in all journeys, unexpected challenges pop up, including the arrival of children, which requires the couple to cultivate valuable parenting skills—without a handbook!
Too often, we end up saying “if only I had known then what I know now.” Since there’s no way to go back and relive our lives, we need to focus on the best way to respond to these painful memories. Otherwise, we will live under clouds of blame and shame and be paralyzed by fear.