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Archive for the 'Parenting' Category

Whose helper are you?

Posted on December 10th, 2018 · Posted in Culture, Holidays, Parenting, Worldview

 Santa’s Helper? Your children know everything about you. They see when you are sleeping, they know when you have been good or bad, they know when you pout and when you shout. Your kids know all of this without your ever having to say a word. When you stumble and ask God for help — they learn. When you stumble and snap or make excuses — they learn from that, too. If you value your relationship with God above all else, your children will know that as well. What does.. read more

Discipline is About Compassion, Not Retribution

Posted on December 5th, 2018 · Posted in Discipline, Gospel, Parenting

This is part two of a series of posts contrasting discipline with retribution. In the first post of the series, I highlighted this consideration: Biblical discipline must not be seen as payment for the sins for which the discipline was administered. Retribution is not the goal of biblical discipline! In response, the question many of you raised was, “How does this work itself out in everyday family life?” This post will begin to address that question. In the first post, we saw how Psalm 103 provides direction on how to address.. read more

A Prayer for Thanksgiving

Posted on November 19th, 2018 · Posted in Parenting

O Lord my God, my Savior, I pray for a heart of thanksgiving. Father, you are my reason for joy even when I fail. You are faithful when I am unfaithful. You promise heaven when I am consumed by the next hour. Protect me from my own selfish desires. I confess that I want what cannot satisfy. I confess that I would rather complain about what is not done than be grateful for what I can do. I confess that I am easily disappointed by those I love even when.. read more

A Promise to Combat Burnout 

Posted on November 8th, 2018 · Posted in Parenting

If you are a parent, you can likely identify with feeling of being burned-out.  Other terms such as exhaustion, fatigue, tired, and weary are also a regular part of parental vocabulary. What is the answer?  Does being continually burned-out have to become the normal reality if you are a parent? Exhausted parents, Jesus calls out to you. Listen to his loving entreaty in Matthew 11:28-30: Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and.. read more

The Golden Rule: The Biblical Response to Self-Pity

Posted on October 31st, 2018 · Posted in Godward Orientation, Parenting

Sin is devastating. An eight-year-old tries to be kind to his older sister. She responds with, “That was stupid!”  Michael is crushed. He tried so hard to be nice and got trashed in return. Michael is tempted to engage in self-pity. Thankfully, Michael’s mom observed the confrontation and took quick action. After Mom addressed the poor response of his sister, she asked Michael this question: “How cool would it be if you and your sister were happy with each other?” Michael responded, “I would love that.” “Michael, that’s wonderful! Did you.. read more

Self-Pity: The Subtle Sin

Posted on October 30th, 2018 · Posted in Parenting

Your six-year-old has become so obsessed with wanting his brother’s new toy that he has convinced himself that he is being treated with extreme cruelty because he can’t have it. By allowing self-pity to grow this child’s parents are raising someone who will become a slave to lust. This is the reason the Holy Spirit warns against grumbling and complaining. This  scenario does not seem as shocking as the story of a teenager obsessed with pornography. However, the attitudes that fuel the teenager’s lust and obsession are the same ones.. read more

Motivation and your teenager

Posted on October 23rd, 2018 · Posted in Parenting, Ruling Desires, Sanctification, Teenagers

Kevin, a teenage boy, has an opportunity to be alone with Tiffany, a girl that he is attracted to. If he thinks that he might get caught and his parents will find out, or that he might get a sexually-transmitted disease, he might decide not to be with her. However, suppose he thinks no one will find out and he can use protection to keep him safe. In addition, he and Tiffany have devised the “perfect” plan to hide their encounter. Thus, the fear of consequence fades against the powerful.. read more

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