Parenting - The Art of Raising Children

Psalm 127:3 Lo, children are an heritage of the Lord: and the fruit of the womb is his reward.

Although children are different, certain general principles apply to each. Listed below are several habits every parent should develop and incorporate into parenting skills:

1. Communicate and demonstrate a genuine interest in what goes on in the lives of your children. Make sure to give them some of your time, your best listening ear, and your undivided attention through eye contact and voice inflections. 

2. Love and accept your children unconditionally. Unconditional love is a habit, not a feeling. It is something you choose to do, not something you wait to feel. Unconditional love means putting others first, in this case, your children. 

3. Set limitations. Since children are unique, the lines might have to be drawn differently for each child. God has put limits on His children, and you need to put limits on yours.

4. Meet the material needs of your children. Paul wrote, "But if anyone does not provide for his own, and especially for those of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever" (1 Tim. 5:8).

5. Pass along your faith. Your primary responsibility as a parent is to pass along your faith and corresponding values to your children. Our children will adopt our faith and values because we tell them to.

6. Teach them to be wise. Learning to live wisely is vital in child rearing because many of the issues facing our children are not clearly addressed in the Bible. For example, the Bible does not explain whether or not dancing is okay; Paul did not include a chapter on rock music; Jesus never discussed dating, etc.

Stephen Green, "Only as genuine Christian holiness and Christlike love are expressed in the life of a parent, can the child have the opportunity to inherit the flame and not the ashes."

Ben Haden, "A permissive home is a home where you don't love enough to exercise the authority God gave you."

Martin Luther, "Spare the rod and spoil the child--that is true. But, beside the rod, keep an apple to give him when he has done well."

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