After the dedication of his baby brother in church, little Johnny sobbed all the way home in the back seat of the car. His father asked him three times what was wrong. Finally the boy replied, “That pastor said he wanted us brought up in a Christian home, and I want to stay with you guys!”
As Christian parents, we often start off our parenting journey with great intentions; we dedicate our children, we try to live good christian lives and we assume our kids will learn how to live a godly life by osmosis. The thing is, as we and our little ones get older, they begin to evaluate for themselves if we are practicing what we are preaching. Have we modelled an authentic relationship with Jesus and taught them what that looks like?
When it comes to parenting, all of us create family values whether intentional or not. For some, the priority of schooling and achievement is preached through rigorous weekly schedules and high expectations. A child begins to believe they are valuable when they produce good results. Love has to be earned rather than given.
To help curb the unintentional road of negative family values, it is helpful to determine what matters to your family most. Creating clear family values can become a barometer of what spiritual health looks like in your home.
Deuteronomy 6:4-7 provides us with an excellent framework of family values.
“Listen, Israel! The Lord our God is the only true God! So love the Lord God with all your heart, soul, and strength. Memorize his laws and tell them to your children over and over again. Talk about them all the time, whether you’re at home or walking along the road or going to bed at night, or getting up in the morning.”
This passage reminds us to stay focused and keep trying. Valuing our families matters. As you consider what your family values look like, here are 5 things to consider.
1. Focus your priorities on what matters most.
We are only given 936 weeks to raise our children and every moment counts. Parent your children with that end in mind.
2. Communicate in a way that gives the relationship value.
The true value of a child can only be found in Christ and it is our job as parents to communicate that who they are is way more important that what they do.
3. Put yourself first when it comes to personal growth.
Show your children what it means to be a follower of Jesus. Make spiritual disciplines a part of your life.
4. Increase the quantity of quality time you spend together.
Children crave your undivided attention. Schedule time with them where all distractions are removed and they just get you.
5. Pursue strategic relationship for your kids.
Who do you want speaking into your children’s lives? What kind of friendships do you want your children to have? Who do you trust to mentor them?
The journey of parenting has many twists and turns so have your road map ready to go. Partner with those who will champion you along the way. You can do it!
About the Author: stephanie holmberg
Stephanie is a wife, mother, pastor, and friend who is passionate about seeing people live authentic, purpose-filled lives. When not working alongside her amazing kidmin team, you will find her at home spending time with her family, snuggling her furry friend Milo, or out exploring all the amazing places Edmonton has to offer.