Friday, July 8, 2011


Ideas clash.  Ideas about how to raise children clash passionately.  Just watch one mom try to explain to another why she needs to get an epidural, birth naturally, stay at home, go back to work, private school, public school, etc.  The only topic I know more volatile than raising children is religion, and if you combine the two…look out.  Life is all about the clash of ideas.  It will surround our daughters in all they do.  Our daughters need to know:
  1. How to hear an idea without agreeing with it.
  2. How to respect another person, and value them, without agreeing with them.
  3. How to speak their own ideas clearly with love and respect, but firm conviction.
  4. How to evaluate another idea based on sound logic and a biblical worldview.

In short, we need to socialize our children.  Whether your daughters attend public, private, or you home-school; we need to influence our daughters more than anyone else.  This can be difficult at a time when they are testing the waters of independence. 

One way to socialize our daughters is to think about what other adults in our daughters’ lives we can point them to?  Who can we give them permission to look to as role models?  One of the nice benefits here is that they will hear the same advice that they mistook for misguided nagging when it came from us.  My daughters want to see the world outside of our home and that is a good thing.  I want them to still have sound guidance in situations when I am not there.  The answer is to get them involved in some activities where there are other adults you know and trust.  Our girls are part of a wonderful FLL team where I know the other moms and dads are upholding the same standards and morals that we hold to at home.  I know the other parents involved and I trust their influence over my children.  I welcome it, in fact.

Another way to influence our children and show them how ideas clash (antithesis) is through reading books with them.  I just recently heard a great speaker, Leigh Bortins, say, “Books introduce antithesis safely because kids will see it first hand soon enough.”  If I read the Hunger Games books with my daughters and talk about it with them, I can walk them through the four points given up above.  I can talk them through difficult ideas presented in the story as a way to give them positive guidelines for real life situations.  The conversations can be fun Saturday morning breakfasts out or silly giggly girly manicures at home.  The same can be done with movies if you make frequent use of the pause button.  The key is to talk to our daughters, ask them questions, and give them our thoughts on the matter. 

Listen, my [daughter], to your father’s instruction and do not forsake your mother’s teaching.  They are a garland to grace your head and a chain to adorn your neck.      Proverbs 1:8-9

My [daughter], if you accept my words and store up my commands within you…    Proverbs 2:1

My [daughter], do not forget my teaching, but keep my commands in your heart, for they will prolong your life many years and bring you peace and prosperity.     Proverbs 3:1-2
Listen, my [daughters], to a father’s instruction; pay attention and gain understanding. I give you sound learning, so do not forsake my teaching. For I too was a [daughter] to my father, still tender, and cherished by my mother.                  Proverbs 4:1-3

My [daughter], pay attention to my wisdom, turn your ear to my words of insight, that you may maintain discretion and your lips may preserve knowledge.                      Proverbs 5:1-2

And so on…J


  1. A great cementing of or 3-day antithesis talk, especially the four points. Going to write them down... Eventually my brain might even retain them!

  2. Thank you, Cecile. I thought the practicum this year was a great topic and related to what I am doing here quite well. :)