Sunday, June 2

3 Traps Even Well-Meaning Parents Fall Into

     Most of us parents sincerely want the very best for our kids. We work tirelessly day in, and day out to make sure our children are well taken care of.  But sometimes we get so busy going through the motions of our daily grind that we neglect looking at exactly how we're parenting and the impact it's making.  As parents, it's easy to fall into traps and patterns of behavior in thought or action toward our kids that do more damage than good. 

    God has been so good to reveal the ways we all need help as parents.  The Bible is packed with gems of encouragement to help us as we navigate the rough seas we encounter as we bring up the next generation. 

    The following is a list of parenting blunders we've compiled (and... ahem, have been convicted of) in the midst of raising our seven children:

1.     {Comparing your kids to other kids.}

Kids need us to be on their side, rooting for them where they are at this moment.  They weren't made to perform like anyone else, look like anyone else, or be anyone else. They were made with the dazzlingly creative hand of God; and what he makes is good.
"My frame was not hidden from you,
when I was being made in secret,
intricately woven in the depths of the earth."
    Psalm 139:15
2.     {Holding onto their mistakes after they've come clean.}

When we say we forgive our kids, sometimes we don't.  We brood, glare, fuss, and generally don't give our kids an inch of wiggle room to make their wrongs right.  We say things like, "I'll forgive you... But, you have to __________."  If we truly want to show the love of Christ to our kids, then we can start by showing the love of Christ to our kids.  When He forgives, He forgives.  He lets us start fresh and new.  There is no brooding, glaring, or fussing. 
  "For you, O Lord, are good and forgiving,
    abounding in steadfast love to all who call upon you."
Psalm 86:5

3.     {Reacting harshly to their mistakes.}

I know it's highly overused, but I have to say it because it's true; We all make mistakes. Whether you want to call them missteps, oversights, snafus, false moves, or miscalculations - we are all guilty.  Kids are bound to make lots of mistakes, because they haven't has as much practice as we have.  Reacting harshly to their mistakes only builds up a frustration in them that they don't know what to do with.  In time, as those frustrations mount into a giant heap of baggage, your child may start to disrespect you.  Possibly only in their thoughts at first, but they may begin to disrespect you with their mouths as well.  Pay close attention to the intent of their hearts when an issue comes up or they make a mistake.  If it's teachable heart rather than rebellious one? They just need more practice. 
"A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger."
Proverbs 15:1

Parenting is tough.  The areas I struggle with and end up writing about are as much for me as anyone.  I hope you will be encouraged as you parent your growing kids.  
We are unfinished masterpieces along with our kids, so give yourself a hefty dose of grace today.  

"For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them."
Ephesians 2:10 Photobucket
1 comment on "3 Traps Even Well-Meaning Parents Fall Into"
  1. AnonymousJune 03, 2013

    Oh, this was so good for me to read today! I'm visiting from the Better Mom link-up. I am learning to see myself as a work in progress, but God just now showed me that I should also see my children as works in progress. Thank you.


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