No One Said it Would Be Easy

strom-with-familyRaising children in a stormy world.

By John Croyle

Over these past few weeks, most of America’s eyes and prayers have been turned toward the people in and around Houston, Texas because of Hurricane Harvey, and the state of Florida because of Hurricane Irma. The aftermath of the torrential rains and flooding will be felt for decades. It was great to see so many people join in to help with relief efforts and to hear the inspiring stories of heroism and survival.

Many people had to leave their homes, not knowing what they were going to find when they returned. But no matter how many warnings there were that these storms were coming, still some chose not to listen. Unfortunately, many who did not heed the warnings suffered the consequences.

There are also warning signs that we need to heed in regards to raising our children. Our best intentions as parents will many times go off course. As you look over this list of mistakes that parents often make, be honest with yourself. Are you making any of these?

1. Over-indulging them, and always trying to make them happy

2. Keeping a schedule that is too busy (eating family meals at home is a good thing!)

3. Having a hyper-critical spirit

4. Too much screen time, not setting limits on phones, iPads, computer, etc.

5. Shielding them from consequences

6. Allowing arrogance and disrespectful behavior to others

7. Forgetting that you’re the parent, not them

8. Praising them for everything they do, and creating a “praise addict”

9. Threatening to withhold love to gain compliance

10. Not nurturing their God-given gifts

11. Not knowing their five best friends

12. Being selfish and living vicariously through your child

Let’s face it—it’s tough parenting! In today’s culture and social setting, it is even harder to train our children to be the very best they can be.

You can endure or ride the impending “storm” out hoping the warning signs don’t apply to you and your family. You can compare your family with others and convince yourself that you’re OK. You can throw your hands up in the air, give up and quit.

It is not hard at all to raise a spoiled, self-centered, coddled, entitled child.

Or, finally, you can make some changes.

We all want our children to be all that God designed them to be. For most of us, it is a matter of making up our mind what we want, focusing on that goal and doing whatever it takes to save our family from the upcoming storm.

The storm is coming! You were given your children by God to protect and train. You are the guide, and your children are counting on you to save them from the storm. Heed the warnings, and prepare your family. It’s up to you!

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