As a Christian parent you are responsible for raising your children so they may become healthy, well-adjusted adults who believe in their self-worth. The following are some great parenting tips:
Encourage and accept your children: Encouraging your children to seek out their dreams is one of the best things you can do for them as a parent. It’s also important to let them know that you accept them, unconditionally, for who they are regardless of what they do, who they marry or date or where they live. Too often kids think they only have worth if they are smart enough, pretty enough, athletic enough or “enough” of anything. Christian parents must instill in their children that in the eyes of God they have worth and that God loves them because they are special and unique.
Love unconditionally: Every parent loves, or should love, their children unconditionally. Children need to feel secure in the knowledge that no matter how harshly you discipline them, or how much trouble they get into, you will still love them. It’s equally important that they know that you are not going to withhold your love from them. When children understand that they are responsible for themselves and for figuring out who they are, they are able to flourish and grow into their own person.
Communicate openly: Just as it’s important to keep the lines of communication between you and God open, the same thing is true with you and your children. Tell them that you are willing to talk and listen anytime they need it and that, when they need help, you will reserve judgment. For example, if they are stuck in a situation in the middle of the night, they can always call you and you will pick them up and make sure they are safe before asking questions and getting answers about the situation in question. Be the kind of parents that kids can talk with openly and honestly.
Set the example: Have you ever told your children they can’t eat in the car and then done it yourself? How did your children react? When teaching your children anything, especially morals and values, it is critical that you lead by example. If you are honest, trustworthy and fair, they will be too. Children live what they learn, and they learn by watching you.
Instill morals from an early age: It is never too early to discuss right and wrong with your children and teach them about respecting the rights of others. Instilling morals in your children early helps put them on a clear path to make solid, value based decisions and helps them learn appropriate ways to behave. The earlier they learn the more likely they are to carry these same values and mores with them as they grow.
Use corrective discipline: It is important when children make poor decisions, get into trouble or behave badly that corrective action be taken. Christian parents correct poor behavior, but in a manner that does not harm the children. The idea is to teach the good, admonish for the bad and explain why the behavior was incorrect and how it hurts others. Constructive discipline teaches respect for self, others and authority while simultaneously saying that you love them enough to discipline.