Thursday, June 13, 2013

Be The Parent

Be The Parent

Proverbs 13:24(niv)
Whoever spares the rod hates their children, but the one who loves their children is careful to discipline them.

This article may not make me popular with some parents, but sometimes we need to hear things we know we need but don't want to hear  and that is many of us are failing as parents because we aren't parenting.  We are too busy trying to be our kids friends, give them everything we didn't have, or trying to be the cool parent, or whatever else your reasons may be.

I am certainly no parenting expert, but I have worked with kids and parents for nearly 20 years in a variety of ways, mostly through the church or the school system and I can pick out the kids very easily who have no home structure, rules, boundaries, or aren't disciplined properly.  I have 2 difficult children of my own, I know parenting is tough, especially with many other factors such as divorce, blended families, outside interference, special needs, and sometimes just stubborn rebellious children.  But, God has given us the task of parenting our kids, not being their friends, coach, or enabler.  Even grandparents and aunt's and uncle's who are in roles of authority need to exercise it.

However, we do not see the long-term effects of going years without making out kids mind, giving them everything they want, and not holding them accountable for their actions, what is the end result?  Children who are rude, obnoxious, dishonest, lazy, selfish, anger issues, no respect for authority, property, or others feelings.  I could go one, but being a parent and raising kids right is tough enough, but when you don't make an effort, stand your ground, be consistent, set clear boundaries, and follow-through with natural consequences, you really are hurting your kid and setting them up for failure

Worst of all, it won't end there, you'll continue to bail them out, enable them, and raise them in adulthood.  They will be a burden because you created the monster and allowed the pattern to go on for years. They will continue to use you, manipulate you, lie, steal, and make your life a living hell. You will constantly gripe and complain about them, but never realize or admit you are part of the root problem.  If you don't believe me, ask someone who has adult children who are still like this? Most if honest will say it's because they didn't make them mind, or let them get by with murder when they were kids and eventually just lost control, gave up, and give in.

I am not sure what your idea of parenting is, but from the beginning of time, God's plan has been for us to raise kids to become independent, responsible, and able to take care of themselves and provide for themselves, and to be positive productive citizens of the human race.    In today's society people don't spank or discipline their kids like when I was raised as much, we tend to give our kids what they want and let tv, computers, smart phones, and ipads raise and teach our kids.  We'd rather keep them busy and give them what they want than deal with them.  That is not parenting.

God's desire for us is to model good lifestyles, behaviors, principles, character, and work ethic with our children.  To raise them with discipline.  As a matter of fact, God says if you love your children, you will discipline them.  Yes, that means holding them accountable, making them do things they don't want to do, and having real consequences for disrespect, lying, backtalk, sassing, running their mouths, arguing, etc...We forget sometimes we are the parents and we set the rules, make the boundaries, and it does no good to have rules, boundaries and structure if you do not enforce it, live by it, or keep it.

There is no perfect parenting formula, and i am not perfect parent,  but the I know we need to go by God's Word as a guidance for how we should parent and raise our kids,  the bible is full of nuggets on discipline, parenting, and raising kids.  Take time to study, ready, and look. There are also good christian books out there on the subject, but the  main thing is to remember you are the parent and you have an awesome responsibility to raise a kid from infancy to adulthood and you only get one chance, and even though you may not like it, it may be tough work, and frustrating, you have to be tough, show tough love, and set clear boundaries, structure, and guidelines with your kids so they learn to behave, act appropriate, and learn the world doesn't revolve around them, they aren't always going to get their way, and they will always have to do things they don't always feel like doing.

It's never too late to start being the parent and parenting the way God intended.   Remember if you have kids or want to have kids, you are the adult, and the parent, and you set the tone.  Also remember, things like toys, cell phones, computers, and yes even sports are luxuries not requirements. I don't care how much society and morals in the world may change, we have to be good parents and should be Godly parents.

 It's sad that many care more about our kids jump shot, curve ball, social life, or status at school than we do their well-being their behavior, attitude, and most of all their soul.  We all can do a better job of parenting and being the parent in our homes and families.  Together, we can take our homes and families back and raise our kids to love God, respect our role as parents, and in the long run teach them to become mature christian adults, who will someday maybe be parents of their own.

Proverbs 19:18(niv)
Discipline your children, for in that there is hope; do not be a willing party to their death.

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