In the car: pray before you start the iourney to ask for God’s help and protection. Rather than eye-spy say thank you prayers. When you see an emergency vehicle pray for the responders and any people in need of help and rescue.
Bedtime Bible reading: vary which Bible you read, even Bible online. Work through the Bible. Let children choose a story or tell it in their own words. Link Bible stories and ask what other stories one might remind us of.
Short Prayers: “thank you” “sorry” “please”
Listening to God: ask him to speak in words and pictures. Prayer for dreams. Get the children to think of a friend at school to focus prayer upon. Pray for children to be a light and witness at school/preschool.
Through the day: when there are behavioural problems, ask God’s Spirit to fill us and help us behave likeJesus. When you learn of someone who is sick, pray for healing. When on a walk or holiday somewhere new and beautiful take turns to give thanks for God’s creation. Maybe when walking or driving through more deprived areas ask God for eyes to see and pray. Reflect on Bible stories in everyday life/encourage Bible recall in different situations, for
example talk aboutJesus and the fishermen when at the beach, or the feeding of the 5000 when you have ﬁsh and chips!
Meal times: give thanks for the food. Talk about day and where you have seen God at work. .
Differentiation and separation begin around ages ten to thirteen. You can spot it when you start to see or sense active and passive resistance. Active resistance is vocal and argumentative: “I already cleaned my room this week and don’t feel like doing it again.” Passive resistance is nonverbal and dismisses or delays on requests. Kids drag their feet when asked to clean the room. Separation is part of social growth, differentiation is important for their personal identity and individuality, and opposition in its very nature creates autonomy. Like it or not, raising children to become adults means transitional rubs. It’s normal. Separation requires a new set of expectations for creating a close-knit family.
Parent Gut Check Vanity Parenting
Have you ever disciplined your children to meet the expectations of someone watching?
In what ways do you see your children as extensions of yourself?
Is the bar set too high in your home?
What are some expectations that need to be lowered? Competitive Parenting
Can you think of two or three children you regularly compare to your kids?
What is driving your need to compare your children to others?
Do your children have the freedom to bow out of activities or sports they no longer enjoy? How do you define commitment to a sport or activity? Is it season to season? Year to year? Is it a commitment for life?
Do you see your child as extra special? •
Have you ever found yourself saying, “He’s a good kid; he just fell in with the wrong crowd”?
If married, do you have a stronger desire to bond with your spouse, stronger than your desire to bond with your kids? If not, what practical steps can you take to prioritize your marriage in the home?
What, if any, emotional needs are you asking your children to meet for you? Quality time? Validation? Comfort?
Do you automatically side with your child when you get a call from a teacher or coach?
Have you ever rescued your child too quickly before all lessons could be learned?
“How are the kids?” Every parent knows this question. It seems innocent and caring, but there are only two ways to answer that question. Depending on the depth of the relationship with the asker, we can either give a laundry list of successes and achievements, or we can venture into a more vulnerable, authentic answer. “Corynn is doing great! She just finished dance for the year with a recital last week. We have birthday parties, church activities, and play dates to keep us busy all summer. She got Mrs. Moore as a teacher for kindergarten, so we are excited about that.” That would be the most elevated and positive answer. What about a vulnerable answer? Here’s one you might not see on Facebook. “My son is struggling in school. He was cut from the baseball team and went over to track and field. He starts community college next fall. We are hoping he gets accepted. His girlfriend broke up with him last week, so he won’t be going to the prom. Pray for him. He is going through a rough time.” Facebook and other types of social media are stressful outlets for the competitive parent. If you’re one who struggles with envy while reading the posts of other parents on Facebook, please keep in mind that most posts are “best foot forward.” Comparing our children with the status updates of others is like women comparing themselves with magazine supermodels. It’s not real! On social media, people post carefully edited versions of their lives and create their own realities.
“What is vanity parenting? When parents look to their child to bring them credit in the eyes of the world, when they push their child to reflect well on themselves, they are at risk of ‘vanity parenting,’ of using the child’s performance to embellish their own.”
Loving parents who prioritize their children over their marriage give all of their time, energy, money, and words to the kids and give each other the leftovers. This is an unloving act for everyone involved. The greatest gift you can give your children is a mom and dad who love and enjoy each other. It provides kids with a support structure as they receive nurturing, care, and security from parents in a thriving marriage. The bond between husband and wife is to be stronger than the bond between a parent and a child ( Gen. 2:24 ).
1) Affectionate touch. We were created for affection. Doctors have scientifically proven that without touch the body and the emotions become unhealthy. Touching someone says to them that they are important to you; they belong, and they have value. If we did not receive affectionate touch in the right way as a child, then in our teenage years we may allow ourselves to be touched in the wrong way.
2)Eye contact. The eyes are the windows of the soul where love is communicated to a child. They drink the love that flows to them from the eye contact with their parents. If children don’t see understanding, loving looks in the eyes of their parents, it can leave a wound that remains unhealed all through life. They then may feel awkward, insecure, separate, and out of place in their relationships.
3)Tone of voice. Babies learn to bond and trust when their parents look them in the eye and speak to them loving words in an encouraging, gentle, tender, and empathizing voice. It continues all through the formative years in the child. Loving tones nurture the soul and help children feel acceptance and value so they can walk free from the fear of rejection and failure.
Many parents today will tell you that they wish they had more of the virtue of patience. I love the story of the man in the supermarket who was pushing a trolley which contained, among other things, a screaming baby. As the man proceeded along the aisles, he kept repeating softly. ‘Keep calm, George. Don’t get excited, George. Don’t get excited, George. Don’t yell, George.’ A lady watching in admiration said to the man, ‘You are certainly to be commended for your patience in trying to quiet little George.’ ‘Lady’, he declared, ‘I’m George!’
That is why I urge you to intercede for your children and to pray that they will not get out of the perfect will of God for their lives. While your children are young, ask God to reveal His plans for their futures in order that you can train them up in the way they should go. Treasure in your heart those things the Lord speaks to you about each child and claim God’s wisdom daily in guiding and training your children.