by: Dave Sheldon
There are several issues that parents need to keep in mind as they discipline their kids. These topics have been formulated in my heart and mind after teaching parenting classes for over twenty years. In no particular order my parenting top ten issues are:
1. Teach kids the value of money. Help them understand interest, debt, credit cards, the value of a dollar, etc.
2. Teaching kids the difference between the Hollywood version of discovering relationships; that is, find the right person based on physical appearance rather than God's concept of relationship and that is, be the right person, with Christ as your foundation.
3. It is important for moms and dads to be the primary source of "sex education." Parents need to help their children develop a Biblical perspective on sexuality.
4. Kids today are stressed out with so many activities in addition to school. Activities should be limited so that family life might actually exist.
5. Who is actually rearing your kids? Are you the primary source or are teachers, coaches, trainers, pastors, etc. Parenting is much more than dropping kids off for instructions and being present at games.
6. Perhaps the most significant issue that parents need to be intentional about is the spiritual formation of the kids. Spiritual God talk and devotions, family service projects, caring conversation and Christian traditions and rituals are the four basics of spiritual formation in children.
7. Building and maintaining solid parent/child communication is very important for helping kids through the tough times.
8. It is so very important for the security of the child that mom and dad put their marriage first. You will teach your kids about marriage through the actions of your own marriage.
9. Help kids understand the ABC's of childhood. A is accepted for who they are. B means that they belong to the family, and C means that they feel competent in some way. Parents need to pay attention to this.
10. Saying you are sorry when appropriate is a powerful healing tool. In fact, Bruce Wilkinson, author of the Prayer of Jabez, mentioned in his powerful 3 Chairs Bible study that the most important thing for young men to do was to forgive their fathers. Sometimes dads need to say, "I'm sorry."