God has provided us with His Word.


Basic traditional roles of being a parent are:

to nurture and educate children,

discipline them, manage the home

and financially support family.

May we nurture our children through the creative teaching

 of God's Word.

God's Word is our Instruction Manual 


and a Road Map for life.


God's Word guides us through the pitfalls and plateaus,


the peaks and valleys, the highs and lows,


and the ebb and flow of raising children.



We should not wait to begin teaching our children 


about God. We should teach them when they are very 


young that God loves them,


He created them, 


and He has a plan for their lives.



May we begin teaching our children to love God


from the very moment of their birth.

What we build on the inside of our children


is far more important


than what we can adorn them with on the outside.

RED & Yellow
Black & White

Children are a heritage from God.

 

God gives children, not as a penalty nor as a burden, 


but as a kindness.

May we help our children see the difference between 


knowing about Jesus and actually following Jesus.


May we pour instruction and discipline


into our children 


so that they mature into men and women


after God's heart.

God has given parents a sacred duty to teach our children.


Parents have the responsibility of instilling


 Biblical truth into our children’s belief system.


This responsibility must not be taken lightly.



It is essential for parents to teach their children


rather than leave this responsibility to the church or others.

 

We must not allow the school, community, television, 


or even Church organizations


to establish our children’s values. 



Others may help, but parents remain 


accountable to God!



Spiritual instruction stands


 as one of the most important aspects to parenting.

God has granted us the awesome privilege 


and responsibility of laying a strong Spiritual foundation


 in our children's lives.


We have been entrusted with souls of great value.

Our characteristics, personalities, outlook, and attitude


 shape their lives.  


It is going to take deliberate effort and consistent focus. 



When the presence of God is evident in our lives


our children seem to gravitate in the same direction.


Our responsibility as adults is to lead children


 in the right direction.


Our little ones need our love and leadership.

We teach our children

 

in two general ways:


Through our example and through our words.


Parents are responsible to teach children through example


 and instruction.


Our examples add meaning to our words.



When parents seek direction from God,


He will guide us in our efforts to teach our children.



We must be diligent and consistent in our efforts to teach


through our example and our words.


Through our example,


children learn trust, sacrifice, service,


 patience, loyalty, forgiveness,


unselfishness, dependence, commitment, 


sharing, prayer, and love. 



We should seek Divine inspiration


 in all our efforts to teach.



Let us expect God to reveal things from His heart to ours.


Let us listen to the voice of the Holy Spirit for revelations


and teach our children 


according to the promptings of the Holy Spirit.



Trust... the Holy Spirit will carry the message


 to the hearts of our children.

Parenting is a journey that never ends.

Our impact as parents and spiritual shapers 

is very powerful.

Parents are to be examples to their children.

Whether our children are infants or adults,

once we have children,


 we are parents for life!


If we shirk that responsibility

our children will be a burden to us and society.

Just as we plan and act precisely when seeking to 


accomplish goals in other spheres of life,


we must prepare ourselves and act intentionally if we want


 to truly raise our children to be upright.


Let us strive to raise well-rounded, productive children


who have a reverent fear of God,


obey God's commandments,


and who can function as righteously productive,


upright citizens in our society.


If we view children as a trust from God


we will put our full effort into their training and guiding.

Our children need to know God. They need to know the


 truth of God's Word. They need to experience a personal 


relationship with God, 


and be equipped and aligned to follow and serve God


 throughout their lives.

Parents should be striving for the same thing...


to point our children toward God.

Children are highly intelligent beings

and are very important to God.

Because of children's genuine humility and innocence...


Jesus used the little children as an example


to teach us about faith, greatness, humility, and God's love.

 

He encouraged us to welcome children as if we were 


welcoming Him.

He called a little child to Him, 


and placed the child among them. 


And he said: 


“Truly I tell you, unless you change and become


 like little children, 


you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. 


Therefore, whoever takes the lowly position of this child


 is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. 


And whoever welcomes one such child in My Name 


welcomes Me.


  — Matthew 18:1-5

 

Are we helping our children to know God?


Are we helping our children build and maintain an 


enduring and close relationship with God? 


What a joyous and pivotal opportunity


 parents have been afforded!



One of the first things we need to do in helping our 


children build a relationship with God is to begin talking 


about God when they first begin to comprehend. 


As they mature, we can turn to Proverbs. The entire 


Book of Proverbs explains God’s instructions


 on how to live!



As parents... we should make it our business to embrace


the opportunity to echo to our children God's divine


 and valuable Word. This should be a natural part of our 


conversation, born from our inmost and steadfast 


relationship with God.

On Children

by Kahlil Gibran


Your children are not your children.

They are the sons and daughters of Life’s longing for itself.

They come through you but not from you,

And though they are with you yet they belong not to you.


You may give them your love but not your thoughts.


For they have their own thoughts.


You may house their bodies but not their souls,


For their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow,

which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams.

You may strive to be like them, 


but seek not to make them like you.


For life goes not backward nor tarries with yesterday.


You are the bows from which your children


 as living arrows are sent forth.


The archer sees the mark upon the path of the infinite,

and He bends you with His might that His arrows may go

 swift and far.

Let your bending in the archer's hand be for gladness;


For even as He loves the arrow that flies,

so He loves also the bow that is stable.

Children are not our own... they are a sacred trust...


a gift from God to parents. 


As parents we are the caretakers of our offspring.


God has entrusted children to us

for the shaping and molding of our children's hearts, 

minds, and character.

Children inherit the genes of their parents and are, in a

 sense, a reproduction of the parents; yet, they are separate

 from the mother and the father. 


The most powerful role models for children


 are the parents. 


As parents, self-improvement 


should be on our minds continuously.


Not only does it set the example


 for our childrens lives, as observers, 


but it helps us to improve ourselves.



 We should try new experiences and broaden our horizons.

 This teaches our children to never stop growing as

human beings. There is always something new we can 

learn in this life. 


As parents and humans... 


it is important to remember that we are being observed. 


It is much like being on stage 24-7,  


as many eyes will be upon parents. Not only will we be a 


role model for our children, but for the public, as a whole.


 For our neighbor who is having a difficult time as a 


parent, we are their role model. For the expectant mother,


 for our child’s friend, we are role models. We are even 


role models for future generations. 


Our actions today might show other parents, and other


 children, how to act, how to behave, how to be 


compassionate, and how to be kind. 


People are watching and learning from us!



We need to take our role of being


 a good parent more seriously. 


We need to embrace the possibility that we might be 


the only positive role model 


our children and other children might ever see.



We should allow our children to see how we interact

 with others and how we carry ourselves. They can see 


that it is essential to practice self-control at all times. 


As parents, it is essential for us to be good


 listeners. The best leaders listen carefully 


and talk far less. As we open our minds and ears to what 


our children are telling us... they will, in turn, 


learn to do likewise. 



Our children mirror what we model to them.


The single most important aspect of being your children’s


 role model is to always walk the talk. 


Actions speak volumes.


“Well done is better than well said.”


 – Benjamin Franklin


Parents need to be good stable role models for their

 children if they want their children to stay on the straight

 and narrow.

There are both privileges and responsibilities


resulting from this gift.


Training children involves three things:

positive instruction, example, and discipline.

Parents... it is our job to raise happy, healthy, 

well adjusted children.

To train children in godliness.

Proverbs 23:13-14 tells us to 


"Withhold not correction from the child."


He who withholds his rod hates his son,


But he who loves him disciplines him diligently.


Proverbs 13:24

SPARE THE ROD AND SPOIL THE CHILD

The phrase Spare the rod, spoil the child comes from

 Proverbs 13:24,

“He who spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves 

him is careful to discipline him.”

God uses discipline to reveal our sin to us.

The saying means that failing to exert authority over a

 child is bad for the child's development.

The rod of correction/guidance has long been used as a 

symbol of authority.

It is good for parents to set rules, boundaries, and 

consequences for children.

Spare the rod of guidance; spoil the child speaks of the

 negative consequences of withholding punishment.

But according to the book of Proverbs

there are many positive benefits of correctly applying the 

rod of correction/guidance to the seat of the problem.

Proverbs 3:12 says,

“Whom the Lord loves He reproves, even as a father 

But what does this really mean?

Withhold not correction from the child.

Children feel safe when there is continuity and consistency

 in daily routines,

and especially when there is a loving atmosphere.

Parents need to stay strong.

Having the discernment and wisdom to help children 

through childhood and the teen years does not come easy.

It is a major test for parents; however, children need this.

They need to know the security of boundaries and the 

consequences of improper actions.

Parents who don't discipline or set any guidelines for their

 children

are likely to produce ill-mannered, whiny, selfish, arrogant,

 rude, defiant, and spoiled children.

Parents are not to withhold discipline from a child;

if you punish them with the rod, they will not die.

Punish them with the rod and save them from death.

Proverbs 23:13-14

 "This language was designed to motivate overly 

permissive parents,

who are afraid of damaging young children with any kind

 of discipline,

or of making rules and enforcing them.

There is no call here for abuse.

Loving discipline does not destroy rebellious children;

it does them a big favor."

 The rod and reproof gives wisdom:

but a child left to himself brings his mother to shame.

Proverbs 29:15

Jesus was gentle with children.


 He is a Shepherd to the sheep.


The shepherd uses His rod to guide the sheep,


 not to beat them!


We should try to keep our children's hearts


and keep them on the right path by praying for God 


to convict and protect them.


He is the GREAT Shepherd


and He will work in their lives 


in a much more effective manner than we can.


If He chooses to allow some kind of circumstance or 


situation in their life,


to keep them in the fold, then so be it!


He is much stronger than human parents.



***The word “Rod” in Proverbs 
is the Hebrew word shabat.

Shabat was used to describe the rod a shepherd used

to guide, control, protect and tend their sheep. 

The rod was used to gently poke and press the animals

 into line and for keeping them out of 

dangerous situations.
The shepherd would throw the rod gently

at a sheep to get its attention

or warn it not to do something.

The shepherds would use rods this way

as a tool of discipline.

They did not throw it to hurt the sheep,

just to startle them into compliance.


The shepherd would also throw the rod at a predator


to scare it away from the flock,


or club aggressive animals or snakes with it.



They would throw the rod hard at dangerous creatures,


aiming to wound or kill them rather than just to alert them.



The shepherd rarely used the rod to “beat” a lamb;

instead, he firmly struck their hindquarters

to get them to go in the right direction.

The sheep came to fear the rod 

without fearing the shepherd.


If a lamb wandered off beyond his reach, the shepherd 

tossed the stick in front of the lamb,

and it would send the lamb scurrying back into the flock.


Foolishness is bound up in the heart of a child;

The rod of discipline will remove it far from him.

Proverbs 22:15
Our children are like sheep much of the time, clueless.

They can be easily led astray, prone to wander into danger

 and in desperate need of protection and direction.

If we don’t shape our kids, they will be shaped by outside

 forces that don’t care what shape our kids are in.
When parents are alienated from God,

the results in the lives of their children are,

of course, catastrophic.

Children need to be prodded from time to time 

to stay on course.

We have to protect our children, to warn them

 by telling what is safe to do and what isn’t, 

before they venture out on their own.
Discipline in its simplest form is to teach a child 

how to learn self control,

to recognize what are acceptable limits, 

to know the boundaries of where to stop.


Children will test the boundaries we set for them,

often deliberately misbehaving just to learn 

what our reaction will be.


They will also act obediently and then look to us 

for support and praise.


From the time they are very young,

we should train them to be obedient and expect 

disciplinary consequences for disobedience.


Those who love well, will discipline well.

And when children know better...

 they will do better.


To learn these things, 

a child does not need to be put down.

Discipline is not to tear them down, 

but to assist in helping them mature.

Discipline is a major part of overall child development.

Discipline takes a firm, consistent hand 

in each child's life.

Parents cannot, however, do a half-hearted job 

or hope that the problems like:

disrespect, obnoxious behavior, disobedience, greed, 

insensitivity to others, dishonesty, anger,

 temper tantrums, and abuse toward a parent 

will just go away...

 they won't!

Discipline is a necessity.

A shepherd has a rod he uses to keep his sheep in line.

In like manner, sometimes God has to use harsh methods 

to teach us valuable lessons,

otherwise we wouldn’t progress or mature in the faith.


This should be greatly encouraging to us for it means that

 God cares enough to watch over us

and push us in the right direction.


It’s the same as a parent who punishes a child, 

not out of some sadistic desire,

but because he/she loves the child 

and wants what’s best for their child.


God instructs parents to use a “rod” 

for an important reason.

The rod of guidance is a neutral object.


It’s much better to use a switch or a small stick 

to punish your child than to use your hand.

You should only use your hand to caress 

and to soothe your child–

you don’t want your children growing up in fear

 of your hand.

It’s tempting for parents to spontaneously 

slap their misbehaving child on the leg,

but that’s a bad habit to begin.
It’s never appropriate

 for a parent to use their fists or hands

to beat their children– 

that is... 

child abuse! 

Abuse is never acceptable,

 

even if a child was being out of order. 


Parental love disciplines and corrects, 


but never abuses.


A Good role model is someone whose


hindsight and insight can become foresight.

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