“Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it” Proverbs 22:6
So I’m always thinking about how I want my 3 boys to be when they grow up. Now I know they are all going to have their own unique personality, but I think about how I want them to be respectful, polite, good with money, and how to treat their wives if and when they get married. I really want my boys to grow up to be Men.
I think about how men have been downgraded and sissyfied, if you want to call it that, in our day and age. I want my boys to be Men in that they look at women as special and appreciate the qualities that God gave women in order to compliment her husband. As Adam said about Eve “this is bone of my bone and flesh of my flesh” and as God says for the man to “love your wives even as Christ loved his church and gave himself for it” A man that is willing to make sacrifices in his own life in order to provide for his family. I want them to realize the role that God has given them and embrace it and fulfil that role because they love the Lord first of course, and because they love their wives and family.
I’ve seen men that aren’t afraid to love their wives and show it. Not just in words, but in actions mostly. Men who aren’t afraid to take charge and be a leader. I admire that and appreciate that because this world is going farther and farther away from that. I know my boys aren’t going to grow up to be perfect, but I really, really want them to grow up being even better servants of the Lord at an earlier age than me or their dad. Of course that means that as parents we have to show forth the example. We have to live it in front of them, and we have to do that from a young age. If there are things lacking, we had better fix them with God’s help, now, while our children are still young, because if we set a double standard and then try to change that once they are 13, 14, 15 years old, they’ve already been largely influenced and damaged by our poor example.
Just as your children will grow up and more than likely show forth your bad example even more in their own lives, so also will the good things show forth if you have been a good example to them. Sometimes we go through this life on auto pilot, not really thinking about how even the little things affect our children. For example: Being organized at home and keeping a clean house. In the grand scheme of things, it doesn’t seem like that’s a huge deal, but, I know how hard it is for me to focus and be organized on a regular basis. Other women I know are really great at it!
Well, it may have some to do with personality. I do know one or two who grew up in messy homes and they themselves are very neat. But I believe that much of it comes down to training. I don’t think it was really ingrained in me when I was young about keeping things organized. Sure I had to clean my room sometimes, but it wasn’t a consistent thing, especially as I got to be a teenager. I believe if I were to set the example and then really enforce in my boys about picking up after themselves consistently, every day, and cleaning their room and so forth, it will make it much easier for them to do those things out of habit when they are adults.
And that’s the thing. We should want to make it easier for our kids to make the right decisions in their lives and that comes down to our example and then enforcing the training part of it even in the “little” things. Because even if I set a good example, if I don’t make my boys clean their rooms or pick up after themselves consistently, then they aren’t learning much!
So, all these little things like cleaning their room, saying please and thank you, saying sorry, shaking hands at church, looking at someone when they are being spoken to……etc….. All these things are very important. It’s called respect, and I think that’s one of the most important things we can teach. If they don’t respect others then how are they going to respect God? If they don’t respect others, then how are they going to show forth love?
Just some things I think about with my boys. I think they are off to a good start though, at least when it comes to girls and respect. All three of them have always been so careful with little girls and always wanting to help them and be nice to them. I have more work to do on being a good example in the organizational area, but I’m working on that ;)