TRAIN YOUR CHILDREN GOD’S WAY
God, he will obey Him and follow His ways (Prov. 16:6). In turn, God will protect and guide that person—and your children need to know this. It brings the certainty that one cannot fail!
Now notice Proverbs 29: “The fear of man brings a snare: but whoso puts his trust in the LORD shall be safe” (vs. 25).
Instruct your children in the absolutely crucial importance of relying on God, not on self. (To learn more, you may read our book- let What Is Real Faith? It will help you understand that true faith is something far bigger and more important—and very different—than what you have previously believed.)
Tell your children—and do this regularly—that they will suc- ceed, that they have every reason to succeed. Nurture them in this belief, helping them to blossom with positive praise whenever the oc- casion requires. But be sure they understand that complete reliance on God is the most crucial element necessary to achieve TRUE SPIRITUAL HAPPINESS—and that it is actually “impossible to please God” without faith (Heb. 11:6).
Explain That Some Things Can Only Be Learned Through Experience
You are not your children’s only teacher—or their only effective one. It has been said that, while experience is not the best teacher, it is a VERY GOOD teacher!
Look for a moment at the game of chess, or the card game, bridge. Both are considered relatively easy to learn, but hard to mas- ter. Doing this takes much time, patience and experience!
Like the process of learning to ride a bike or to ice skate, your children will fall down and will make many mistakes.
Every one of God’s greatest servants learned through his mis- takes and suffering. And God records them in the Bible for us to see this. Even Christ, who lived a sin-free life, learned through suffering. Notice: “Though He were a Son, yet learned He obedience by the things which He suffered” (Heb. 5:8).
Character cannot be built overnight. It takes time, patience, long- suffering, and a lifetime of experience, some of it very difficult and painful. Your children must recognize that a certain amount of suf- fering is necessary, and they cannot avoid it. But, if they are wise, they will be able to reduce it to a minimum. Learning from experi- ence can make all the difference.
Teaching About God, His Word and Christianity
Teach your children to make the most of all life’s experiences. Teach them that “all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are called according to His purpose” (Rom. 8:28).
Teach Your Children That Good Things Come to Those Who Wait
Already described as the “now generation” almost a generation ago, those of this age have become the most impatient in the history of the world. Referenced earlier, rarely are people willing to wait very long for anything—either in the pursuit of goals, until they can make a desired purchase or anything else.
Yet, Jesus taught, “In your patience possess you your souls [lives]” (Luke 21:19). This approach—and it applies to everything in life—flies directly in the face of a world based on instant gratifica- tion, where people want things now.
Carefully explain to your children to always differentiate be- tween NEEDS and WANTS. The latter can usually wait and, in some cases, the passing of time will prove them to have been an unwise purchase before a mistake is made.
Children must be taught that things of value, and virtually every goal of any worth, requires time, preparation, education, persistence and a diligent application of all seven laws of success to have any hope of reaching success! This will help your children to automati- cally eliminate some of their wants because they will see that they are not needs.
The Bible states, “Prepare your work without, and make it fit for yourself in the field; and afterwards build your house” (Prov. 24:27). This scripture is actually a reference to getting married (which in- cludes having a home) more than actually building a house. Be sure you are guiding your children to plan far enough ahead so they will be able to establish a “home” at the time they get married—and to have a comfortable savings in place before having children.
Teach your children to accept greater responsibilities when ask- ing for a raise in their allowance. Explain to teenagers the importance of growing in their work skills before asking their boss for a pay raise or promotion. Whenever possible, tie these kinds of things together in their thinking. This will further teach your children to connect cause and effect throughout their lives.