Pro 22:6 Train up a child in the way he should go; and when he is old, he will not depart from it.
I have been out of town for a couple of days on business and last night I received a phone call from my daughter, who poured her heart out to me. Everything she said to me brought me back to this scripture. What matters in parenting is rearing a child in the ways of the Lord; in the way he should go. I could not have been more proud of my daughter for the very grown up, mature observations she shared in her conversation.
After my conversation with her, I began to think of how we can continue to rear our children as teenagers. They are under so much pressure and stress to perform at school, to perform in their extracurricular activities, to perform at home. Music, sports, grades, scholarships...everything has become a competition. At such an age, it can be difficult for a teenager to discover where he or she belongs - particularly with all of the manufactured competition between themselves and friends and other children their ages.
It is up to us as parents to show and teach our children the Word of God. To teach them who they are, who they belong to and what the Word of God says about how to live, how to behave, how to interact with others and how to give God the glory. It is not easy to do all of those things as a parent. We have our own issues. We are husbands and wives, we are employees and employers, we are brothers and sisters, sons and daughters, mothers and fathers. How do we balance all of these areas of our lives while helping our kids to keep balance in theirs?
It is no easy feat. That is certain. We, as parents, must stay in the Word. Constantly praying, constantly seeking the Will of the Lord for our families, consistently being the example we are supposed to be according to the Word of God for our children. Keeping our tempers low, our love at the forefront of everything we do...we must show grace to our children and overlook their faults when the mistakes they make are not important. We cannot constantly point out everything wrong our children do every moment of every day. If we do, then we can break fragile little spirits that require the healing power of God's love to mend. We must be willing, as parents, to ask forgiveness when we know we have done wrong...even to a child...