The Heart of a CHILD

In His Steps by Mark Keathley

In His Steps by Mark Keathley

First, then, if you would train your children rightly, train them in the way they should go, and not in the way that they would.

Remember children are born with a decided bias towards evil, and therefore if you let them choose for themselves, they are certain to choose wrong.

The mother cannot tell what her tender infant may grow up to be, — tall or short, weak or strong, wise or foolish: he may be any of these things or not, — it is all uncertain. But one thing the mother can say with certainty: he will have a corrupt and sinful heart. It is natural to us to do wrong. “Foolishness,” says Solomon, “is bound in the heart of a child” (Prov. 22:15). “A child left to himself bringeth his mother to shame” (Prov. 29:15). Our hearts are like the earth on which we tread; let it alone, and it is sure to bear weeds.

If, then, you would deal wisely with your child, you must not leave him to the guidance of his own will. Think for him, judge for him, act for him, just as you would for one weak and blind; but for pity’s sake, give him not up to his own wayward tastes and inclinations. It must not be his likings and wishes that are consulted. He knows not yet what is good for his mind and soul, any more than what is good for his body. You do not let him decide what he shall eat, and what he shall drink, and how he shall be clothed. Be consistent, and deal with his mind in like manner. Train him in the way that is scriptural and right, and not in the way that he fancies.

If you cannot make up your mind to this first principle of Christian training, it is useless for you to read any further. Self-will is almost the first thing that appears in a child’s mind; and it must be your first step to resist it.

-The Duties Of Parents by J.C. Ryle the-duties-of-parents1-e1265254596418

Do You Have The Right?

repost as taken from: HERE

What I’ve found among many Christian parents is that they don’t realize they have “the right” to parent their children. They realize they have the responsibility, but they don’t feel free to enforce rules, teach children to work hard, to serve, to be respectful, or to put others first.

I heard a mom once APOLOGIZE to her son for having asked him to take the garbage out. It was as though he was doing her some huge favor.

And though it makes it hard on the parents, it’s the children who ultimately pay the price. They grow up lazy, demanding, arrogant, self-centered, and utterly unequipped for the Christian life.

Christian parents must ignore the message of our permissive, anarchist culture and boldly (and humbly) train their children in the nurture and admonition of the Lord. And yes, I used boldly and humbly together on purpose.

I realize I have readers who will quickly point out that some parents are overly harsh with their children. This is true. Children must be loved, nurtured, hugged, kissed, cheered on, encouraged, taught, cherished, and edified. However, at this point, in today’s society, I think our bigger problem is the parent who hates his children—the “hands-off parent” (Proverbs 13:24).

Correct your son, and he will give you rest; yes, he will give delight to your soul. Proverbs 29:17


“checked-out” parents

It seems these days as if sometimes parents are just, “checked-out.” 
I write about this in my Culture Challenge of the Week:
Culture Challenge of the Week: Brawls, Vandalism, and Intimidation
In late May, a dozen teens stormed through a New York City Dunkin Donuts, hurling chairs, upending tables, and stealing drinks and donuts.
The Dunkin Donuts incident came on the heels of the highly publicized beating of a young woman at a McDonald’s in Baltimore.  A 14-year-old girl and an 18-year-old young woman were to blame in that one, but numerous other teens and adults stood by and — except for one older woman — did nothing.
There’s more: Recently, a tribe of affluent New York City teens went on their own vandalism spree, torching a playground at one of the city’s public schools. The vandals’ parents quickly ponied up $50,000 for a playground repair fund. While the teens may see a dip in their allowances in the future, they surely heard only one message: you can buy your way out of trouble.
And, on a much smaller level, but closer to home, a rowdy group of lacrosse players broke into an arcade game at a pizza place on a crowded afternoon. Several boys walked off with fistfuls of trinkets — in plain sight of their parents, who did nothing.
What gives? Why such out-of-control behavior?
The teens’ theme: “Just because we can.”
How to Save Your Family: Be Parents “On the Job”

Good parenting takes more than love.  It takes fortitude, presence, and endurance. It’s a marathon, not a sprint! 

The attitude problems and lack of civility we see in teens today is stunning, and a sure sign of parents gone missing.
Walk into any public school in America and you will see posters, signs, and school codes that talk about respect. Respect for others. Respect for authority.  Respect for self. But it’s meaningless talk — with little impact — if parents are not “on the job” at home. 
When children grow up without parents who teach them how to “love their neighbor as they love themselves,” and how to restrain their impulses, tempers, and greed, they rarely learn it on their own. Self-indulgence and arrogance take root, instead. It takes an adult — a loving parent — willing to commit the time and energy it takes, year after year, to help the child become a person of character. 
Few parents abandon their children completely.  But, many do neglect their children’s character formation because they are simply not home often enough.  For some, work, travel, or other commitments take priority. Perhaps, as in the New York arson incident, high-powered careers cause them to adopt concierge-style parenting (“surely, we can pay someone to do that”). Other parents become emotionally unavailable; too preoccupied, indifferent, exhausted, or unwilling to pour into their children — how heartbreaking, but how common!

When parents check out, children suffer.  They become captives of their own immature and immediate wants, lacking the external restraints that will teach them self-control and genuine respect for others. And, with few external controls, they have little hope of cultivating self-control. 

So, fuel yourself for the journey: pray, daily. Seek the advice of more experienced parents and trusted counselors. Lean on the emotional support of your spouse and close friends.  And, most importantly, make raising your own children a top priority.
The “world” will tell you to give more time at work and leave the parenting to the “professionals” in the government school system. It seems no one encourages moms and dads to spend more time at home. Well, consider yourself encouraged! It’s not a matter of choosing between “quality” and “quantity” time with your family. Children need both direct attention, and lots of it. And, when you dare to buck the system and actually raise your own children, you will discover a joy and bonding with your sons and daughters that you never knew was possible.
The fact is, boys and girls need their mommies and daddies — they crave you!
The training we give our children takes time and hard work, but there’s a tremendous payoff in the end: a child who becomes a loving, responsible, self-controlled adult, capable of achieving great things.
Rebecca Hagelin