Tag Archives: Parenting

Faith in the home – Spiritual Conversations with your Children

5 Jul

Research done among youth group participants by Fuller Institute revealed only 12% of mothers have regular dialogue with their children about spiritual or life issues.  Only 5% of teenagers reported that their fathers have regular dialogue with them regarding spiritual or life issues.

The lack of communication in our homes about our faith is clearly an obstacle to the passing on of our faith and a cause of the Millennial Exodus.

Most of us are familiar with our responsibility as parents to imprint our faith upon our offspring.  Deuteronomy 6:6-7 states…

These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. 

However, being a spiritual leader in the home is not always easy.

Many parents struggle with addressing spirituality within the home.  Some parents struggle because it was never modeled for them, or feel as if they are not equipped.  The main reason that parents don’t talk to their children about faith is because they are afraid. 

Yes.  Fear shuts down the conversation before it even begins.

We fear how our child may respond either through statements, questions, or actions.  As parents, we fear that our child may reject the faith that we believe – and that their unbelief means that they are rejecting us.

Another source of this fear could be that our child might struggle with the same doubts that we ourselves possess.  Most Christians do not like facing our doubts, but we try to ignore or bury them in other activity.  We know the “church answers” or party-line responses for our doubt, but those pesky doubts linger.  Instead of leading our child on this pathway of faith, we give our children the glib responses that we don’t truly believe.

While making spiritual conversations with your children doesn’t take a lot of training, it does take courage.

  • Be courageous – step out and speak to your child about their spiritual lives and beliefs.
  • Sit back and listen.  Don’t attempt to answer all their questions, or solve all their doubt.  As your children age, you should not be looking to convert them or change their beliefs.  You should seek understanding for yourself, and encourage them.  If you seek to change them, these conversations will always end in conflict.  If you seek to listen to them, these conversations will lead to a deeper fuller relationship with your child.
  • Speak to your journey – trials, failures, victories, and hopes.  Share with your child your own experiences, while acknowledging their autonomy to make their own decisions.
  • Reflect and pray.  Don’t express your concerns to your child, but express your thoughts through praying to God.  Process what you hear with your spouse or friends.  Having community with others who are parenting emerging adults is essential for maintaining your sanity.
  • Repeat. 

May God grant you the faith and courage you need to faithfully parent your emerging adult children.

Dr. G. David Boyd is the Founder of EA Resources.  He has a passion to encourage parents of emerging adults, and faith communities who want to minister to their needs.  If he can help your community, please contact him at gdavid@earesources.org.

Hatred for that Cat in the Cradle.

13 Jun

I listen to various types of music – disco, Motown, classic rock, and current tunes.  There are very few classic songs that I do not love.

However, there is one song that I have hated my entire life.  A song that makes my skin crawl.  A song that will always make me change the radio station.  “Cat’s in the Cradle” is a 1974 folk rock song by Harry Chapin from the album Verities & Balderdash. 

The song is too depressing, and I still hate it.  Apparently my children feel the same way, because they now throw a fit anytime they hear it.

the middle - cat and cradle

The song was highlighted in an episode of the Middle.

Here is the original scene.  I am a fan of the Middle – Here is a post that I dedicated to the show.   The Middle will give parents an outside perspective of the issues facing emerging adults – with ALOT of laughter.

The second video definitely lightens the mood.  Here is the video.

While in the midst of raising your children, remember that like other life stages – emerging adulthood has its trials and blessings.

Whether you love or hate that song,

Remember to minimize the trials, and focus on the blessings. 

7 Lessons for New Fathers: Do It Anyway

16 Jun

By Ryan Casey Waller, pastor at Church of the Incarnation

Here are seven lessons for new fathers. What do you think? What would you add?

img_08171. IT’S OK TO BE SCARED.
I was terrified when my son was born. Overjoyed? You bet. But also terrified. I was thirty, in a loving, stable marriage, employed, and scared out of my bloody mind. Who’s actually ready to be a father? Nobody. So stand up, take a deep breath, and get ready to become the man you’ve always hoped you could be. You’re not ready. Do it anyway.

2. CHANGE EVERY DIAPER.
Yes, it’s gross. Yes, it’s hard in the dark. Yes, you’ll be terrible at it. Do it anyway. Wiping a baby will forever change the way you experience love. Something magical happens when we use our hands to love. I can’t explain it. You just have to do it. You’ll never regret it. Well, actually, you might regret some of them. Do it anyway.
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3. SPY ON BABY AT NIGHT.
Your wife will threaten to kill you if you wake the baby. And sometimes, you will. And she will try to kill you. Do it anyway. There is no view on earth like the one from above the crib at night. If you want a sneak peak of the Good Lord’s shore this side of a heart attack, watch your baby sleep. Then slip your finger in his hand, and try not to lose it when the warmth of his palm becomes the only thing in the world.

Click HERE to read full post via Ryan Casey Waller.

 

3 Ways To Avoid Talking About Sex – Guest Post by Adam Mearse

20 Oct

Messages about sex fill our society, and many of the messages are not healthy.  In our sex-saturated society it is crucial that we speak to our children about their sexuality.

As fathers, it can be intimidating, but don’t worry…

  •   you don’t have to cover it all at once (but it should be the first of many conversations).
  •   you don’t have to know everything about it.
  •   you don’t have to be smooth and polished.

However, don’t wait until you feel ready or you may never do it.  Here is an article that I recently found that provides parents some pointers when talking to your children about sex.

In my conversations with emerging adults and teens around the country, one theme continually roars up to the surface…no one is talking with Christians about sexuality. I know that kind of statement colors way too many people with the same drab crayon, but my own research, and that of a lot of other good people studying the sexuality among Christian folks, makes it pretty clear that the exceptions are few – especially in the mainstream evangelical world.

Read the remainder of the article HERE!

memeupdated

Picture Source: http://adammearse.com

Adam Mearse is a pastor and researcher and blogger at www.AdamMearse.com.

A Father’s Summer Trip Rules

2 Jun

A Father's Summer Trip Road RulesAs the summer approaches, many of us will be taking a few road trips with our families.  In the midst of your hours behind the wheel, rejoice in the gifts that God has given to you (although their fighting might be driving you crazy).

Here is a fun article on CrossWalk.com about what this might look like…

Click HERE.

Here is my favorite line,

Yet in spite of all this, when I look in the rear view mirror, I see your dear faces and my heart is so glad. You are flesh of my flesh, breath of my breath. You inspire me to greatness, though I feel at times mediocre.

The article is written by Paul Coughlin, and you can read more about him and his ministry at his website.

35 Things We’d Better Tell Our Sons About Harassment, Assault & “Boys will be Boys”

18 Dec

Just read a powerful article by Ann Voskamp, a NY Time best-selling author of A Thousand Gifts.  This article is important because it discusses what to teach our adolescents and emerging adults about sexual abuse and violence.

boyswillbeboysHere is the Article!

It is longer than many articles, so make sure that you have the time to read and digest it.  Each time that I have read it, I finished inspired and encouraged in my role as a man and father of three sons.

Wow, here are a few of my favorite quotes.

1.  And better stories begin around our dinner tables and our kitchen sinks.

Stories around our dinner tables and kitchen requires spending time together as a family.  This requires saying no to the endless activities of our world, and saying yes to better things.

2.  It is the scarred ones who make the Body of Christ sensitive.  

I know because I am a scarred one.  I was actually scarred by  the church (and I am not alone).  I am not thankful to those who gave them to me, but I am grateful to the God who sustains me daily.  These scars don’t define me, but they have shaped me in ways I once never imagine.

2014-09-28 13.35.063.  You don’t value a woman by telling yourself that she’s some man’s sister, or daughter, or mother. A woman doesn’t derive value from having men in her life that value and like her. A woman has value because she is made in the image and likeness of God. Period.

I have heard this false argument so many times.  Women do not receive their value due to their relationships with men.  They have value because of their relationship to God as Creator.  I don’t want my sons to treat women respectfully because they fear a dad sitting in the living room cleaning a gun.  I want my sons to fear God to whom they will give an account one day.

4.  That’s what you have to get, Sons — Real Manhood knows the heart of God for the daughters of His heart.

I want my sons to know that Real Manhood understands God’s love for men and women.

5.  Son, let everything you read of women be shaped by how Jesus sealed His view and value of women.

There is a beautiful piece of poetry in the center about Jesus’ view of women.  It is amazing.

May God make me a real man who will stand up for the value of women in the church.

May God make me a real father who will teach my sons to value women.

May God do the same to you.

 

david in hat - blackDr. G. David Boyd is the Founder and Managing Director of EA Resources, a non-profit designed to minister to the needs of Emerging Adults and their parents.

 

 

The No. 1 Reason Teens Keeps the Faith as Young Adults

18 Nov

sessums-mother-daughter-679867-h[1]This article was just released by the Huffington Post, and I thought that it would be an encouragement for parents of children, teens, or emerging adults.

Click here for the ARTICLE.

The article is based on research by Christian Smith and the National Study for Youth and Religion.  My favorite quote in the article by Christian Smith,   “No other conceivable causal influence … comes remotely close to matching the influence of parents on the religious faith and practices of youth.  Parents just dominate.” 

So go read the article, and then go DOMINATE your kids by speaking, teaching, and living your faith within your home and your relationships with them.  

Dr. G. David Boyd is the Founder and Managing Director of EA Resources.  If he can encourage the parents in your community, please contact him at gdavid@earesources.org.

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