Parenting is worth it all the way

Posted: August 30, 2010 in Me and people, Parenting

A long time ago I heard someone mentioning that a key element for success in many areas was to keep a pattern of constant learning. Thus, it was suggested that one should attempt to attend at least once every three years a formal continued education class; at least every two years, a marriage conference or parenting class… and so on and on.

This past weekend, Angela and I had the opportunity to attend a parenting conference that was very enriching and refreshing for us; here are some of my take-aways:

–          True success doesn’t happen when you accomplish something great in one area as you let other areas of your life crumble; true success happens when you achieve -in balance, great things and fulfill your purpose and call in all important areas including family (paraphrase from Dale Carnegie’s quote)

–          Outsourcing and subcontracting may be a good strategy in business but a terrible one when it comes to parenting. The responsibility of raising kids into good citizens, Christians and spouses, does not lay on the schools or the church or the government but on the parents.

–          Rules without relationship leads to rebellion; relationship without rules leads to frustration; Love them, talk to them and teach them about rules and the  consequences of breaking them.

–          Mark 9:36-37 may be a good reminder of the critical importance of appropriate physical affection with kids: “…He [Jesus] took a little child and had him stand among them. Taking him in his arms, he said to them…’Whoever welcomes one of these little children in my name welcomes me; and whoever welcomes me does not welcome me but the one who sent me.’”. Hug your kids, tell them you love them.

–          “What gets us in trouble in school is often what we get paid for when we grow up”; some of the things that annoy us of our kids (like strong will) could actually be traits that God has gifted them with for a purpose. My objective may be to help them to develop those traits instead of crushing them.

–          There is a big difference between controlling our kids and being in control; they are the kids, we are the parents, we are still (or should be) in control –that is to set the boundaries and rules to help them to develop judgment and character.

–          Great accomplishments are made out of small milestone achievements. If we want to look back in 20 years and say “I raised a great kid’, it all starts with the example we give them this year, this week, today, right now. Kids are always watching and taking mental note of whether we choose to turn the tv on or open the Bible up; whether we respect the law fully or we take allowances in deciding when and how to obey (Speed limits)

–          Parenting is worth it all the way. In spite of the sacrifices, hard work and responsibilities, being a parent -although frustrating, exhausting and seemingly hopeless at times, it’s worth it. It’s never been heard from someone dying to say “I wish I had made another million’. Often the final thoughts are more in the lines of ‘I wish I had spent more time with my kids’. Doing the whole parenting thing right, doesn’t compare at the end with all the hard work. This quote I think, puts it in perspective: “Parenting: The days are long, but the years are short”

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