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Archive for the 'Parenting' Category

To shield or protect?

Posted on October 22nd, 2018 · Posted in Parenting, Worry

Protecting your children is the obligation of a faithful parent. However, there is the false notion that children should be protected from every danger and uncertainty of life. That simply is not possible! There is too much uncertainty in life, too much which is beyond your control to protect .  Yet, the temptation to worry about all of the things from which you cannot protect your children persists. You cannot shield your children from life itself or even from their own hearts.  The storms in Matthew 7 come to the.. read more

The fear of the Lord is your refuge

Posted on October 19th, 2018 · Posted in Godward Orientation, Parenting

Your middle-schooler wants to hang out with friends that are not a good influence for her. She is unhappy.  Your teenager is frustrated with restrictions that you believe are wise. He thinks you are being unfair and has no problem letting you know about it. In response, you don’t want to communicate you are ultimate authority. You just want to be a safe refuge for your kids. But you know the choices your children make are not always the best ones. And you know that God has tasked you with.. read more

Safety and your children

Posted on October 13th, 2018 · Posted in Parenting, Teenagers, Worry

“Be safe!” This is frequently the last thing you say to your children when they leave the house. Often the plan for their safety doesn’t go much beyond theses words. Yes, you have taught them to be good drivers, you have told them which situations they should avoid, and you may have even encouraged them to pray for God’s protection. But in your heart, if you think too long about it, there is a nagging fear for your children’s safety, a fear that goes beyond just physical safety. You hope.. read more

Do you live for your children?

Posted on October 2nd, 2018 · Posted in Parenting

Seth came home with a heavy heart. He had just been demoted to second-string. He was no longer a starter. He would still be playing a lot, but the coaches decided to give another player the starting job.  He was disappointed, but this is not why his heart was heavy. Somehow he would have to tell dad he was no longer a starter. That was the moment he was really dreading. Seth’s dad was always a star at whatever he did in sports. He never failed to remind Seth that.. read more

Radiant Commands

Posted on September 28th, 2018 · Posted in Communication, Parenting

Have you heard comments like these from your children? “Do I have to?” “I had to that yesterday.” “I’m too tired.” “That’s not fair.” “I’ll do it later.” “Seriously?” “I don’t think so.” These are all responses from children to a parent’s request for obedience. Not exactly encouraging responses! There is one commonality in all of these responses: a disdain for obedience. The children giving these answers have little regard for their parent’s authority.  For these children, obedience is a curse and certainly not a blessing. One of the ways.. read more

The performance trap

Posted on August 15th, 2018 · Posted in Authority, Gospel, Parenting

The gospel is about grace; School is about performance. The gospel is about receiving compassion; School is about earning grades. The gospel is about resting in the power of Christ in failure; School is about trying to avoid the shame of failure. The gospel is about acceptance in Christ regardless of performance; School is about gaining acceptance because of performance. Skilled and caring teachers and parents will work hard to bridge the gap illustrated by these contrasts. However, it is important to grasp that children can easily think that performance.. read more

School and your marriage

Posted on August 13th, 2018 · Posted in Parenting, Shaping Influences

It is August and summer is practically over. School is starting. There are lists to check: clothing, textbooks, supplies, transportation, after-school activities and more. You know the drill.  However, there is one important matter that you don’t want to overlook – your marriage.  The challenges of school demand much of a marriage. Time, relationship, and communication are consumed by the demands of school.  The relationship between mom and dad can easily shift into one where scheduling and time pressure become the main focus. Is your marriage ready for school? Don’t.. read more

The blessing of parental authority

Posted on August 3rd, 2018 · Posted in Authority, Parenting

Parental authority is often seen as a curse rather than a blessing. This is a sad reality. Authority is a gift of God to his people and especially to families. Authority is often abused on the one hand or grossly neglected on the other. However, it is important not to frame your view of biblical authority based on abuses or personal experience. Parental authority is a daily object lesson that all of creation is under the authority and rule of the Lord of the Universe. However, viewing authority as a gift.. read more

The mixed bag that is Father’s Day

Posted on June 15th, 2018 · Posted in Parenting, Shaping Influences

Everyone has a father. That much is obvious. The problem comes when Father’s Day becomes a one-size-fits-all event. Everyone has a different life-experience regarding having a father, being a father or not being a father. Many are blown away by the faithful sacrifice of their dads. Sadly, many are also devastated by the selfishness of fathers. There are men who are thrilled with the joy of being a father. There are others who are not. There are still others who long to be fathers but are not. There are fathers.. read more

Thoughts on Being a Father — Tedd Tripp

Posted on June 14th, 2018 · Posted in Authority, Godward Orientation, Parenting

As Father’s Day approaches, families prepare to honor their fathers. For me, as a father, it is a time to reflect on the meaning of fatherhood. The Apostle Paul’s observation about fathering in 1 Thessalonians 2 is a good place to start. Paul observes that he had been like a father both by example and his instruction. As for his example, both the Thessalonians and God were witnesses of how holy, righteous and blameless he had been toward them. Holy refers to him in relationship to God; he was a.. read more

Complain or praise

Posted on June 11th, 2018 · Posted in Godward Orientation, Gospel, Parenting

If your children frequently praise God for the events that happen each day, you can know that a good foundation for life is being built in their hearts. However, If you hear your children frequently complain or grumble,  they are becoming a slave to their own desires. This means there is trouble ahead. Sin feeds on the demand for immediate happiness and gratification. That is why a child can go from seeming bliss to outrage in an eye blink. One moment everything is fine. Then he sees his brother with.. read more

What is Obedience?

Posted on June 3rd, 2018 · Posted in Authority, Discipline, Parenting

Obedience is a great privilege, honor and joy. Obedience is not something to use to gain a reward. Obedience is the reward!  No one can make himself more acceptable to God by obedience. This means that your children must not think that you will be more accepting of them if they obey you. I know this seems awkward. So much of your life is about training and teaching God’s truth. But the truth is that one’s own obedience does not make him acceptable to God. The last thing that I.. read more

The human side of the gospel

Posted on June 2nd, 2018 · Posted in Gospel, Parenting, Sanctification, Shaping Influences

God has a role for you to play in illustrating the atoning power of the gospel. No, you have nothing do to with the sacrifice that Christ made for your sin. But, yes, you have an important part to play in defeating the impact of sin here on earth.  Proverbs 16:6 demonstrates how you can show the beauty of the atonement: Through love and faithfulness sin is atoned for; through the fear of the Lord a man avoids evil. With these words Solomon reminds us of how important it is.. read more

Questions: the window to your child’s heart

Posted on May 10th, 2018 · Posted in Communication, Parenting

Questions, questions, questions: just what every parent wants, more questions!  However, your children’s questions are an invaluable tool to help make you a better parent. The questions they ask provide you a window into their heart. Their questions tell you what is important in their world. Questions tell you if your child is sad or happy, what he values and what he doesn’t. Questions are huge! Moses anticipated that the law of God would be so rich and stimulating that it would bring questions from children (Deuteronomy 6:20-21). This is.. read more

Discipline and faith

Posted on April 20th, 2018 · Posted in Anger, Communication, Parenting, Wisdom

  Biblical discipline is an expression of God’s love and mercy to his children. As God lovingly, gracefully disciplines us, we as parents are to give this same warm discipline to our children. It is huge that you, as a parent, see discipline as something that is positive and not punitive. Discipline is not about retribution or getting even. Discipline has the goal of producing peace. Without that goal, discipline becomes a manipulative tool that will only provide separation with your children. It is just as huge that you administer.. read more

Fathers, fear, and self-interest

Posted on April 16th, 2018 · Posted in Authority, Communication, Discipline, Parenting

Men, our legacy since the fall is that we tend to either be indifferent or become angry at our children’s sin.  Both responses are dangerous and destructive. When it comes to relationships, men are often intimidated and become fearful, even if we may project the opposite emotions. The two most damaging male responses, indifference and anger, stem front the same root cause – fear and self-interest. We become indifferent in order to mask our fear of not knowing what we should do. We often become angry because we have lost.. read more

Is God mad at me?

Posted on April 13th, 2018 · Posted in Communication, Gospel, Parenting, Wisdom

Do your kids think that God is only pleased with them if they obey? Do your kids think that the gospel means that they must be good so God will love them? Do your kids think that they must be good for you to like them, for you to love and delight in them? To answer these questions listen to the way your children talk about the gospel. You may be thinking that children seldom talk about the gospel. But actually, they do. Listen to your children talk. Listen to.. read more

Video: “The Gospel for Moving Targets” by Nancy Snyder

Posted on April 13th, 2018 · Posted in Instructing, Parenting, Wisdom

Now available for pre-order; ships late April / early May. The Gospel for Moving Targets is a large-format activity book that is a resource for parents and teachers to bring meaningful biblical and gospel-centered teaching to children. These hands-on devotional lessons are designed for children who struggle to sit still, keep quiet, pay attention, follow directions, and control their emotions. These lessons are also designed to help parents and teachers who love such children aim the gospel at the hearts of moving targets. Features and Benefits Curriculum for teaching the.. read more

You were born to fight

Posted on April 8th, 2018 · Posted in Communication, Criticism_, Parenting

You were born to fight. James puts it this way: “What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don’t they come from your desires that battle within you?” It is time to stop being surprised that you and the people you love are inclined to fight. This has been reality since the Garden. We all have a part of our brother Cain embedded in us. So the question is not why do you fight, but how can you stop fighting. Here is at least one answer: consider others, especially the ones.. read more

The gospel and discipline

Posted on March 23rd, 2018 · Posted in Discipline, Gospel, Parenting

Parents don’t often think of the gospel and discipline in the same sentence. Typically, we tend to think that discipline is what you do now and the gospel is what you hope your children will embrace in the future. But Paul has a different understanding of the place of the gospel. For him, the gospel is the foundation, the hope of all of life for Christians (see Colossians 1:21-23). This means that your parental discipline must rooted and built upon the gospel. Just as you know that you can’t make.. read more