I spent more time studying for my SAT's than I did preparing to have children. Sure, I attended the birthing class, the hospital tour, etc., and I learned how to physically take care of my baby after it was born, but I did absolutely nothing to prepare for raising my daughter. Visionary Parenting is all about grabbing hold of God's vision for your family and then employing it. Here at Hitherto & Henceforth we're all about starting TODAY. My word for 2012 is Intentional and this book is helping me be more intentional about my parenting. Won't you join me?
I recently wrote a family mission statement and that helped me figure out a baseline to which I could refer. It kind of gave me a keel so I could stay grounded when raising my children, but in the first chapter of this book, Dr. Rienow made a statement that really hit me,
"If we are not intentional with our parenting, we run the risk of ending up with a family filled with achievement, recreation, and niceness. God has a far grander plan for us and for our children. He created our families for a purpose. He gave us children for a reason."
I'm really challenged in a few different ways.
Firstly, God has specifically given ME these children for a reason and conversely, these children have been given me as a mom for a specific reason. I have a huge influence over their hearts. You could come to my house and make a remark to my daughter about her dress and she will shrug it off, but the same remark out of my mouth could mean a total meltdown and even a possible scar all because I, as her mother, hold a stronger sway over her heart.
I hold a strong sway over my childrens' hearts.
Just those nine words make me want to cry and smile at the same time. I want to cry because I know of the many times I have misused my sway and have said things that I have later regretted. I'm smiling because I know that these little ones are so completely precious to me and I love them so much. Thankfully, today is a new day and I can say, "I'm sorry" to both them and God and start fresh.
I've heard people say "I'm not an evangelist" or "I don't feel led to just tell people about Jesus" and I get those points of view, but when it comes to your kids, it's a different ballgame. My children were given to me, so that I would tell them about Jesus. Objective number one in mission raise my kids is not to raise successful adults. That is a great goal and it is definitely on the list, but my number one aim should be to introduce them to Christ. If that's not on the list then isn't the rest of the list moot?
What are your views on why God gives us children?
Have you ever said something that has scarred your child's heart?
What is your number one goal in raising your children?
Next Thursday we'll be chatting about Chapter 2.
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