What Should We Do?
Your kids need you. Heavy doses of you. If you have not been to your child’s sporting, dancing, singing, concert, or chess event, make it a priority to be at the next one. And every one after that!
Hold the Line. Just remember there are few hills worth dying over. A teen who is 5 minutes past curfew may or may not have a good excuse. Be judicious in how you respond. Ask yourself, “Is getting to the bottom of it worth the week-long tension in the house?” Make consequences based on the maturity, age, and disobedient act. Choose your battles wisely.
Sameness. Your home should be a place where kids can regulate their world around them. Show your consistency and model before them that your love and commitment to Truth in your life will never change. Every parent’s challenge is to:
“Write these commandments that I've given you today on your hearts. Get them inside of you and then get them inside your children. Talk about them wherever you are, sitting at home or walking in the street; talk about them from the time you get up in the morning to when you fall into bed at night. Tie them on your hands and foreheads as a reminder; inscribe them on the doorposts of your homes and on your city gates. (Deut. 6:6-9, The Message).
Let Them Spread Their Wings and Fly. Give your children the space to become who God created them to be. Solomon advises to “train up a child in the way he should go” (Proverbs 22:6, italics mine). Focus on God’s love and direction with careful consideration for their gifts, talents, and abilities. Notice the text doesn’t say “in the way you want him to go.”
The most important part of parenting is teaching them how to live with you and without you.
Prayer. Spend most of your time in prayer for and over them. Prayer is our way of giving them back to the One who gave them to us. And He loves them more than we do (John 17:24).