I’m not necessarily in this place personally, but I’m just around the corner with my 12 /2 year old and my 10 year old following right behind.
I’m speaking to the tension that exists between our families’ beliefs and our own personal convictions.
The longer we wait to allow our kids to substantiate their own personal beliefs and require them to hold to a family belief, the less of a foundation that they will trust in when they leave your home.
My kids are starting to watch movies where they can hear some choice words that “we don’t say.” They understand through school, friends, and environments that they are in that they cannot control what other people say. I want my kids to understand the value of choosing better words to describe or identify something rather than slang, cussing, or cursing.
The FAMILY BELIEF brings rules that have consequences for using that kind of language in my home. However, that’s not enough to cause my kids to hold these beliefs as a personal choice, especially when they are not in our home!
This applies to all areas of life & faith – our kids HAVE to take steps to make their faith and beliefs their own! It might look different for every family in what areas and ages you want to take these steps, but here are 3 steps I believe can help the next generation go from Family Belief to Personal Belief.
1. Explain WHY.
Our youth need to know WHY we believe what we believe (I certainly hope YOU know why you believe what you believe). It’s simply not enough to say “because the Bible says so.” They have to know WHY the Bible is an absolute truth they can trust as a foundation of their lives. They have to know WHY agreeing with Jesus is not only the BEST option, but often times the one that will cause the most tension in their lives. When they get to a certain age, WHY becomes more important than the behavior or rule itself.
I can’t remember who said this – but I love this quote!
“Profanity is the effort of a feeble mind to express itself.”
If you’re a parent of older elementary, middle, or high-schooler- you understand the tension of watching your kids try to express themselves through the use of profanity. Many times it starts out with just pushing the envelope to see what’s acceptable – repeating what they heard on the bus or their favorite Disney show.
Parents have one simple phrase that is repeated over and over again, “no… we don’t say those words.” What? Are you kidding me – you’re pants on fire! (because you’re a liar!) The truth is, you’ve said and probably still say (in the right circumstances) worse things than your kid has ever said.
Eventually, every kid learns what they can and cannot say in front of mom & dad and they move to what is acceptable and preferred language in their group of friends. This is natural.
Is there a better way to ensure our kids don’t have a “potty mouth?” I think so.
Welcome to The Tension is Real Podcast. A podcast dedicated to real discussion about the TENSION that exists between Life and Faith and how to embrace it so we can live with purpose and freedom.
Today’s Topic – The Tension in Parenting Styles
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I’m not exactly sure that we are “destroying America”, but I do believe that we are setting up the next generation for failure, in turn harming our future by NOT setting them up for success.
Let me start with a definition:
Participation Awards – showing up for a sport, activity, or event and receiving an award without merit, achievement, or success of any kind.
Let me further clarify that there is no spiritual foundation for this post. I’m a Dad, and I do lead a church of some AMAZING kids and teenagers! So, I care about this issue on a deep level. Our church believes that we partner with parents to help raise the next generation to love and honor God, so how they are raised matters.
Okay, so this will be a short post. It is for all those “doubters” out there. I don’t mean the ones that live in a constant state of worry, anxiety or hopelessness – those people have other issues I can’t address at this time.
I’m talking about seeing God move in your life, maybe in some amazing ways – but you are doubting.
“16Then the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had told them to go.17 When they saw him, they worshiped him; but some doubted.” – Matthew 28:16&17
I am always amazed at this passage. Jesus has risen from the dead, walked and talked with folks for several days, and right before he ascends into heaven by way of mountain top – “some still doubted”.
So… The only question I have for this post today is –
“What is God doing that you are doubting?”
Is he actively at work in your marriage… but you doubt if he can take care of you financially? Is he nurturing the hearts of your kids… but you doubt he cares about a problem you have a work? Is he growing you in areas of your faith and helping you take a risky step in following him… but you doubt that He’ll come through in the end – even though HE is the one who initiated the risk?
“What is God doing that you are doubting?”
I am a father of two. A 7 year old little girl and a 4 year old boy. For the past 2 years I have heard a phrase repeated several times in my house, or in the car, or at bed time that I’ve commented about, smiled at, and laughed out lout at. The phrase… “This is the best day ever!”
What a simple set of words that describe a profound attitude. Was it really the best day? Probably not to us… Did we do something so spectacular to deserve such a proud praise? Probably not…. So why the big deal? Why the exaggeration? Why the praise!
The answer lies in attitude.