PARENTING: SEVEN STEPS TO BETTER GUIDANCE


PARENTING: SEVEN STEPS TO BETTER GUIDANCE

Certainly, raising a child is one of the most taxing yet fulfilling, and frustrating yet rewarding, tasks any human can attempt. As one father said, “you only get one shot at raising your child.” Given the enormous influence parents have on the health and happiness of their children, you may feel a strong need for trustworthy advice on how to be a better parent. The following step should help parents, especially newborn parents into raising godly children. These steps include:
1. SEEK GOOD ADVICE:
The first time that parents hold a newborn child in their arms, they may be buffeted by conflicting emotions. So it’s imperative to seek advice of the one person who knows most about how to raise children – the creator of human life, Jesus Christ. His word, the bible, contains both direct advice and practical examples that can help you become a better parent. “I will give advice with my eye upon you,” he promises. – psalm 32.8
2. CREATE A LOVING HOME:
Children need love and wither it. In the 1950s, anthropologist M.F.Ashley Montague wrote: “what the human organism requires most forts its development is a nutriment of love; the source of virtually all health is in the experience of love, especially within the first six years of life.” Modern researchers echo Montagu’s conclusion that “children suffer serious crippling effects when exposed to an inadequate diet of love.” Love . . . is a perfect bond of union – Colossians 3: 14
3. EXERCISE YOUR AUTHORITY:
Do not worry that you will alienate your children or crush their spirit if you exercise your authority. Studies show that “children brought up by loving but authoritative parents – those who are supportive of their children yet maintain firm limits – excel academically, develop better social skills, feel good about themselves, and are happier overall than kids whose parents are either too lenient or excessively harsh,” says parent magazine. “Discipline your children, and . . . they will give delight to your heart.” –proverb 29:17
4. DEFINE FAMILY RULES AND ENFORCE THEM PROMPTLY:
Defining reasonable limits for your children’s behavior and enforcing those limits takes time, efforts, and perseverance. And children seem to have a natural urge to test any such boundaries. The fact is, “says Ronald Simons, a sociologist at the University of Georgia, “kids fare better with clear rules and firm consequences. Without structure, children become self absorbed, selfish, and unhappy – and they make everyone around them miserable too.” God’s word simply states: “if you love your children, you will correct them.” – Proverb 13:24
5. ESTABLISH AND MAINTAIN ROUTINES:
Routines are a major part of adult life. Work, worship, and even recreation usually follow set routines. Establishing and maintaining routines requires self – discipline and determination to overcome a child’s initial resistance to conforming to the routines. Parent handicap their children if they do not teach them to restructure their time and to stick to a schedule. On the other hand, “studies show that having rules and structures makes a child feel safe and secure and teaches self control and self-reliance,” says Dr. Laurence Steinberg, a professor of psychology. “Let all things take place decently and by arrangement.” – 1 Corinthians 14:40
6. ACKNOWLEDGE YOUR CHILD’S FEELINGS:
Apply the bible’s advice to be swift about hearing, slow about speaking, slow about wrath. Children want and need the most important people in their lives –their parents – to know how they feel. If parents habitually contradict their children when such feelings are expressed, the children will be less likely to open up to them and may even start to doubt their ability to feel and think for themselves. “When anyone is replying to a matter before he hears it that is foolishness on his part.” –provide 18:13
7. TEACH BY EXAMPLE:
Strive to be good- not perfect – examples. And use your occasional poor behavior to teach a positive lesson. Word often impart only information, but actions, they say teaches. For example, parents may tell their children to be respectful and speak the truth. However, if these same parents scream at each other or at their children and tell lies to excuse themselves from inconvenient obligations, they teach that this is how adults should behave. Copying parents is “one of the most powerful ways that children learn,” says author Dr. Sal severe. “Do you . . . the one that teaching someone else, not teach yourself?” – Romans 2: 21
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