TRAIN YOUR CHILDREN GOD’S WAY
ally permissive, confusing, “anything goes” world is perhaps the most trying, difficult thing that adults could do.
The situation could be likened to a ship entering what has been called “the perfect storm.” The force of the wind and the size of the waves beating on the “parental ships” of today mean that parents are working seemingly against all odds, and without a compass, maps, a working rudder, or an engine to power their ship—assuming they even knew where to steer it. However, in reality, the greatest “perfect storm” is that which their children are suffering. If it could be said that parents are experiencing 30-foot waves and gale force winds in the open ocean, at least they are on a ship. By analogy, their children are experiencing the same conditions, but in a small, leaking row boat, without oars or even a can with which to bail!
This leads back to the role of parents, the purpose and focus of this book.
For instance, fathers and mothers today must counteract a host of powerful pulls coming from Hollywood, Madison Avenue and MTV, all of which glamorize rebellious attitudes and self-centeredness. Then they must contend with a strange, perverse generation of young people who are different from all previous generations, and who have their children surrounded. Youth and teenagers of today have a whole variety of new subcultures, values and thinking—many of which would shock all but the most liberal, open-minded parents!
Consider the following quote from The Daily Telegraph, a British newspaper, in an article titled, “Keep out: TV, DVD and computers rule.” It plainly reveals the effect of technology on parenting today: “Technol- ogy is destroying traditional family life as young adolescents increas- ingly spend more time in their bedrooms playing computer games, surf- ing the Internet or watching television, videos and DVDs, a study re- leased today claims. Whereas the living room used to be the hub of the home, now more and more 11- to 14-year-olds prefer to be alone in their technology-filled bedrooms, communicating with friends via mobile phone texting or e-mail.” (This article goes on to state that 75 percent of children ages 11 to 14 have a television in their room, 64 percent have a DVD player or VCR, and one-fourth have a computer in their room.)
So many children and teenagers today have become hopeless, with no hint, inkling or clue of why they are alive, and whether there is a PURPOSE
Facing the Challenge
for human existence. Just observing their faces in a crowd reveals this much. They can see world conditions grow ever worse, with the news of each day seemingly worse than the day before, and the problems each day becoming worse and greater in number than the day before.
The result of all this is that the vast majority of children and teenag- ers today simply tune out the cacophony of confusion and emptiness of religion, the division and ineffectiveness of government, the evils and troubles plaguing schools and education, the complex economic forces at work in the modern world and the breakdown of the family, which increasingly often includes their own. This leads them to select from— more like back into—a variety of different means of escape: drugs, alco- hol, sex, gambling, endless parties, and mindless, gratuitous entertain- ment, among others, to occupy themselves. In turn, these pursuits lead to a whole host of problems which are overwhelming society—and par- ents.
Your children will be—and maybe already are—tempted to turn off, give up and drop out if you are not unceasingly vigilant in your respon- sibility to keep them in the belief that they can have a future, and that it can be wonderful beyond belief, if they are carefully building it step by step under your guidance! You, as parents, are charged with giving—in- fusing!—hope, and helping your children to retain it, when virtually no one around you will be helping.
This means that your task will not be easy! To produce a happy, moral, emotionally mature and productive adult—including a strong relationship with the true God—parents must swim against a swirling ocean of powerful currents represented by the trends, pulls and overwhelming pressures of the modern age. In addi- tion, great numbers of parents are working alone instead of together to- ward their children’s well-being. Many of them must openly combat the efforts of the other parent, who is working directly against the first par- ent’s view of the well-being of the children. Tragically, the vast majority of parents are simply drowning under the strain—and the net effect is that their children are drowning with them.
When it comes to childrearing, parents often do not know what to do—or when to do it. Do you? To achieve success in their most important stewardship, parents must be fully equipped—and this means thoroughly armed!—with ALL the necessary knowledge to reach their goal. All other paths will leave them bewildered, con- fused and overwhelmed, having no hope to even effectively commu- nicate with their children, let alone to actually GUIDE them properly!