Tag Archives: parents

Happy Father’s Day

dad

Allow me to take the time today to say Happy Father’s Day to all the dads out there!  I could take the time to say what wonderful grandfathers I have…I have the best grandpas!  I could tell you how richly blessed I am with such a tremendous father-in-law…God smiled on me there!  But truly, I only have one dad!  And God definitely blessed me with the best!

I came across a poem that probably defines my relationship with my dad perfectly.  It is titled ‘A poem about my Daddy!’…

I drive you nuts,
I’ve turned you grey,
I’ve made you proud,
I’ve spent your pay.
I’ve stressed you out,
I’ve hurt you bad,
I’ve made you laugh,
I’ve sent you mad.
I’ve made you smile,
I’ve made you sob…

Now I know I wasn’t anywhere close to being the perfect son!  I can attest to what I put my dad through, as I raise my children.  I see so much of myself in them.

As I look over the last 35 years of my life and the impact my dad has had on me, so many different things come to mind.  The many times he’s been done wrong, and yet he still stood strong.  Watching him go through a trial no parent should have to face, losing a child to cancer, and yet remaining strong and being there for mom and myself.  Watching him labour diligently pastoring a church in a town, where many other men would have given up, yet boldly pressing forward.

I could continue on and on, and run out of words to describe my dad, but I will close with saying, I am who I am today, because of a dad who set such a great example for me.

I love you dad!

 

Advertisements

Leave a comment

Filed under parenting

Discipline

NotesOnParenting_Banner2011

Have you ever noticed…it can seem like everyone is an expert on how you should raise your kids.  And especially, those who have no kids.  I can remember my pre-children days…I would see children horribly misbehaving (from my point of view), and would boldly think to myself…’my children will NEVER act like that’!  And then…my wife and I had children!

Parenting can be a struggle some days!  You can at times get that overwhelmed feeling!  But then when they’re sound asleep, you quietly slip in their room, and watch them sleep, appearing so innocent!  Children are a blessing…I couldn’t imagine my life without them. I want the best for them.

Psalm 127 3-5  Lo, children are an heritage of the LORD: and the fruit of the womb is his reward.  As arrows are in the hand of a mighty man; so are children of the youth.  Happy is the man that hath his quiver full of them…

We live in a world that teaches that children should only be rewarded, and that punishment is not an option.  A few years ago my wife and I attended a course on discipline, in which the instructor began to teach that discipline does not involve punishment, only choices and rewards.  Her concept was punishment is completely negative and should not be involved in child rearing.

Proverbs 13:24  He that spareth his rod hateth his son: but he that loveth him chasteneth him betimes.

Unfortunately, there are several issues with the philosophy of no punishment!  First of all, life is full of consequences!  If you don’t perform adequately at work, you get fired.  If you get fired, you get no paycheck.  If you get no paycheck, you don’t pay your bills.  If you don’t pay your bills, you lose your house and your car.  My question would be, are the social workers going to be there to bail the children of today out of their financial struggles when their child rearing philosophies produce a nation of adults that are unable to face the consequences of life?

Second, as I watch children who face no punishments, or consequences, and as I observe the parents beg and plead with their children to behave, it becomes quite apparent to me that the philosophy of no punishment is NOT working by any stretch of the imagination!

Of course, one must be careful and have a healthy balance in the forms of discipline utilized!  The goal is to raise a child into a responsible, participating, contributing to society adult who has morals and convictions!

Proverbs 22:6  Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.

Discipline:  Discipline would be a healthy balance of expectations, rewards, and punishment.  Along with the expectations should come a good role model.  While there are some activities or behaviors designated for parents and not children, at the same time a parent needs to model expected behaviors for a child.  In example, if I don’t want my children to swear, why would I swear?  If I want my children to exercise, I should exercise!  If I want my children to clean their room, I should clean my room!  Children learn by the example of their parents!

Rewards:  I do believe in rewards…but not everything in life comes with a monetary reward!  I eat healthy so I feel good…I shower so I don’t smell…I take my medication so I don’t get sick…I pay my tithes because I want to do right by God!  No one pats me on the back…no one gives me a cookie…there is no immediate reward for some expected behaviors.  I also don’t get an allowance from my wife when I do the dishes, or sweep the floor.  She may say thank you and give me a pat on the back…but this is my house, so there is an expectation!  When it comes to children though, if an allowance is offered, there must be an expectation of what is required to gain the allowance, and when the chores aren’t completed, there must be a follow through!  No chore = No allowance!

Punishment:  Sometimes parents can get too ‘punishment happy’!  There should be NO thrill attached to punishment!  You should NEVER be happy punishing your child!  And, if you find that you are constantly punishing, you need to take a step back…your child is not getting the concept you are trying to push!  Why?  NO child enjoys punishment, and no child will pursue punishment!  So where is the break in communication that is causing you to feel the need to constantly punish?

Are the expectation clear to the child, and are they constant?  (What I get punished for today, do I get away with tomorrow?)

Is the child at an age of understanding the expectation, and the punishment?

Does the child ever get positive attention?  Children CRAVE attention, and if they don’t get positive attention, they will misbehave just to get attention, even if it is negative!

Does the child feel loved by their parents?

Does the child see others get away with behavior they are punished for?  (This includes mom and dad!)

When you feel like all the attention you are giving your child is negative, take a step back!  Evaluate the child’s behavior.  Evaluate your behavior.  Evaluate the circumstances.  Evaluate the other influences in the child’s life.  And keep in mind…there is no ‘one size fits all’ method to raising children!  Every parent has a different personality, and every child has a different personality.  What works for one family, may not work for another.

And don’t be afraid or ashamed to ask for help or guidance!

Leave a comment

Filed under parenting

Happy Thanksgiving

heart-happy2

I posted yesterday in preparation for Thanksgiving, and yet I sit here feeling the ‘urge’ to post yet again!  The house is full this morning with my cousin and his wife, and seven children, along with the noise that comes with children.  My parents are on the road and should be arriving here within the hour.  My wife and I and my cousin Doug got up this morning and swept out the garage and set up tables and chairs.  The turkey and ham are in the roasters, the rolls are rising, the pumpkin pies and the apple pie are made and cooling in the fridge.  We are preparing to start peeling potatoes and soon the kitchen will be bustling with the final preparations of the Thanksgiving dinner.

With all the hustle and bustle that goes into a Thanksgiving celebration…and with all the joy that we feel with family near, let’s not forget to give credit where it is due!

How richly God has blessed my life!  I am so grateful for all His blessings…a warm home, the delicious food we will be enjoying, the peace brought by His presence, all my needs supplied, and more than I could begin to type!

Take time out today and give thanks to the Lord!

Happy Thanksgiving to my family and friends!

Leave a comment

Filed under Holiday

Heroes

Heroes…

The world is full of so-called heroes.  Young people look up to celebrities whom are greatly leading this young generation in the wrong direction.  From football stars, to basketball stars, to movie stars, both young and old are watching on the television, on the computer, and buying up magazines at the supermarket to track their every move.  They watch their rise to fame, the money they are making, but also their lives falling apart with drugs, divorce, and a wild lifestlye.

We need to point our children and grandchildren in the right direction when seeking heroes.

Who are my heroes…

My Grandparents:  My grandpa and grandma left Bloomington, IN when my dad was a child.  They headed to Iowa City, IA, a city where they knew no one, and a city with no Apostolic Church.  They rented an apartment, and rented a storefront, and began holding services.  My grandfather left a well paying job, and began busting tires at Montgomery Wards to pay the bills.  He also started a church in Phoenix, AZ years later.  I have watched my grandparents throughout my life always sacrificing so they could fulfill God’s will in their lives.  They will never be rich, they will never receive awards or accolades, and will never be well known, but in my eyes they are heroes and giants!

My Parents:  29 years ago, my dad relocated to Williston, ND to take over a small church.  This is where I grew up.  We never had family near us and we had to travel great distances to spend time with family.  We spent Easters, Birthdays, and Christmas with just the four of us.  I have watched the struggle at times when it seemed that things were falling apart in the church.  But for 29 years, I have watched my dad continue to sacrifice his life for the purpose that God has in it, never complaining and never doubting God!

My Wife:  12 years ago, I married the greatest lady ever!  She had NO clue what she was getting into!  She has stuck by me through thick and thin, and last year she moved away from her family and her friends, to follow me to the other side of the state, so we could fulfill God’s will in our lives.  She has stepped up to the plate, and even stepped up to the pulpit a few times when needed, and dealt with ‘issues’ as they arose, going way outside of her comfort zone!  She has amazed me, standing strong, and not doubting God’s direction in our lives!

Jesus Christ:  At the top of my list of heroes, is Jesus Christ!  Noone else has ever went to the cross for me.  He’s always been there, through thick and through thin, through the highs and the lows!

Now how about you…go find some heroes worth looking up to!

 

1 Comment

Filed under Christian Walk