Children’s Children

T-shirt- you can't sit with usDisturbed is an understatement! Appalled is more like it!! This t-shirt bothers me on so many levels.

  • An adult somewhere thought this was a good idea and created it.
  • Another adult buyer for a store thought it was appropriate and purchased it to sell.
  • The fact that any parent in their right mind would buy this and encourage their child to wear it blows my mind.
  • Then the thought that our teen girls might actually think this is cute, harmless, and the norm scares me for our future.

What are we teaching our children?

We wonder why there’s bullying. We wonder why the world is turned upside down.
So are most of our homes. I entered lots of homes as a home health nurse years ago…. I couldn’t believe the way the majority of people actually live. It’s shocking. What we teach our children in the home is what they will carry into the world.

We mammas have a high calling to raise our children in the ways of God. This is serious business. My babies are not my own. They belong to God first. He has entrusted them to my care. As their mama it is my calling, above all other callings, to raise them well. To teach them to know Him, to walk with Him, to live alongside Him each and every day.

Don’t get me wrong, we are not perfect. God doesn’t expect us to be. But there are a few things that will do our children and their children well, if we’ll take the time to show them.

  • Respect – At our house, we are real with one another. We get loud sometimes. We all make mistakes, and it’s ok. We extend grace by apologizing and forgiving quickly.
  • Boundaries – Healthy boundaries make healthy children. Creating boundaries is our job as parents. Children won’t create boundaries, they will see how far they can push them. Create boundaries with food, how many activities they can be involved in at one time, what time they go to bed, how long they play video games, what rating of movies they can watch. I’m not suggesting we be so strict with our children that they can’t breath. I’m just suggesting that we use wisdom and discernment in creating boundaries. By doing this, we teach them wisdom. There’s a sense of security and freedom in knowing the boundaries.

Occasionally, my children wanted to watch PG-13 movies when they were 11-12 years old. I wouldn’t let them, and I would explain why, “The world has rated these movies. If people in Hollywood say it’s ok for you to watch, it probably isn’t. Most PG-13 movies aren’t even good for mommy to watch. It’s my job to protect your little eyes and minds. At a minimum, we will follow the ratings that have been put on these movies by worldly people to protect you.”

  • Prayer – Teach them God is in control. He has the answers. Trust Him. Ask Him believing. Talk to Him like a friend. Be thankful always. How to give Him praise. And show them how to recognize the enemy and fight spiritually. My children learned how to wear their spiritual armor at a young age. We drew Ephesians 6. The pictures helped them understand and memorize how to put on their spiritual armor.
  • Identity – Who they are as children of God (chosen, loved, treasured, blessed, saved, and royalty as daughters and sons of the King) and how to walk in that identity with confidence and humility.  TEACH them the Word, then they’ll learn who they are and Whose they are.
  • Priorities – What it looks like to put God first day in and day out.   Do our children see us having relationship with God, or is it religion (going to church) that we’re teaching them? For example, mine see me making time alone with God a priority. They hear me talking about God over the phone with my girlfriends. They hear me praying at different times. They know I talk to God about my problems before I talk to anyone else.

If we don’t teach our children to follow Jesus, the world will teach them not to…quickly!

“And these words which I command you today shall be in your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up.” ~Deuteronomy 6:6-7

6 thoughts on “Children’s Children

  1. laurabennet says:

    Thanks, Rivera! So well written and so true. Thanks for looking deeper into this issue too. People who are only looking to make a buck aren’t thinking about the ramifications their actions are having on the rest of the world, and how easily influenced our children are. We have to be the number one influence in a world gone crazy.

  2. Olivia says:

    Just a random fact, this is in reference to a movie. You have great points and the movie is PG-13, however, most teenagers and young adults would understand the reference.

  3. Pamela says:

    Beautiful, Rivera!!! Excellent advice. Parenting is the hardest job you’ll ever love! Only He can help us, especially in this challenging time we are living in!!!

  4. Mary Hempen says:

    Wonderful and necessary advice Rivera. Being a GODLY mom is the most difficult, yet most fantastic role we have as women.

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