Someone once said, it’s the easiest thing in the world to have an opinion on parenting and the most difficult thing to actually do? How true is that. Grandparents think they’re experts, because they’ve raised a few. Friends without children know everything there is about raising a child, because they’ve read all about it on the internet. Friends with children will tell you it’s a piece of cake, because they’re lying and misery loves company.
Actually there is no right or wrong way to be a parent. It’s kind of a “learn as you go process,” filled with adventures that will live in your memory for a lifetime.
There have been differences of opinion on discipline, behavior problems, time outs vs. spankings. The experts change their minds on a daily basis so it really doesn’t do much good to look to them for advice.
Dr. Benjamin Spock’s book, “Baby and Child Care” was, throughout its first 52 years, the second-best-selling book, next to the Bible. In the end, he made this statement,
“The more people have studied different methods of bringing up children the more they have come to the conclusion that what good mothers and fathers instinctively feel like doing for their babies is the best after all.”
I belong to the old way of thinking, regarding marriage and family and I know I’m not alone in my thinking. I believe that marriage should be between one man and one woman, as clearly stated by Almighty God. I also believe that the family unit has disintegrated over the years. I’m not sure how this has happened other than the possibility that folks just don’t work hard at marriage anymore or the feminist movement. Somehow dads have been relegated to second class citizens even when they are involved in raising children.
When another human being enters the equation, we soon discover their needs come before our own. There will be sleepless nights, bumps and bruises, calls from the principal’s office, fending off bullies, helping with homework and a whole plethora of duties.
OK, I’m old fashioned. That’s because I’m old and I have a right to be.
My advice to anyone with children is this – God has placed this responsibility on your shoulders. It is a responsibility you should take on with all the vigor you can muster. It isn’t going to be easy, but God has also promised to guide you with His Word in every circumstance – including parenting. Turn to that manual for living and you’ll find tons of advice on parenting.
Treasure those moments when you want to tear your hair out because your six year old spray painted a naughty word on the garage door. Relish the times you’ve had to scrub spaghetti sauce out of your child’s ears. Enjoy the funny things they say. Listen to them. Encourage them. Remind them that winning isn’t everything. Teach them. Protect them. Discipline when necessary. Introduce them to Jesus at an early age. Love them with all your heart.