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

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Compare and Contrast

I am in awe of some of the women’s blogs I read.  They sound so together; baking bread, sewing their own clothes, individual time with each of their children, and the list goes on.  I’m not there yet.  In fact, I will probably never be one of those women.  My kids are on one screen or another on a daily basis.  They might watch TV or play on the Wii or the computer.  We eat fast food probably once a week, (gasp!) sometimes more.  I like watching some of the old cartoons like Voltron and Thundercats with my kids.  I’m very human.

I am also learning not to compare myself to those women who do seem to have it all together.  I try not to wish for a different house, metabolism, or the ability to play dolls.  The Bible has a name for that: covet.  When I compare myself to others it will only lead to jealousy or a false sense of pride.  Neither of those will do me any good.  I must learn to be content with where God has me.  I must learn to walk that fine line of being content with who I am while still striving to become more like Christ.  Have you noticed how much of our Christian walk is learning to embrace peace/joy while being mindful of our own depraved nature?

How do I teach these things to my daughters when I still struggle with them so often?  I can’t claim to be the expert on becoming Christ-like.  I can do two things though.  First, I can let my daughters see me struggle and model for them by turning to God when the going gets tough.  Second, I can continue to point them to the scriptures when life gets tough for them.  This second one requires me to already be doing the first; I can’t point my daughters to scriptures that will help them if I am not in the Bible myself enough to know some scripture that might be helpful.  I know where wisdom comes from: Fear of the Lord.  I need to look to God alone for my contentment.  I need to compare myself to Christ (as depressing as that may be), not to other women in the world. 

When I am happiest and the more content, I am in balance.  I can grasp at that peace that passes all understanding while knowing how far from perfect I am.

…for wisdom is more precious than rubies, and nothing you desire can compare with her.  Proverbs 8:11

We do not dare to classify or compare ourselves with some who commend themselves.  When they measure themselves by themselves and compare themselves with themselves, they are not wise.   2 Corinthians 10:12

Each one should test their own actions.  Then they can take pride in themselves alone, without comparing themselves to someone else, for each one should carry their own load.  Galatians 6:4,5

Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord!  So then, I myself in my mind am a slave to God’s law, but in my sinful nature a slave to the law of sin.  Romans 7:25

To him who is able to keep you from stumbling and to present you before his glorious presence without fault and with great joy- to the only God our Savior be glory, majesty, power and authority, through Jesus Christ our Lord, before all ages, now and forevermore! Amen.  Jude 1:24,25


I'm trying to add my own comments and thanks to those that have posted...not having much luck with it though.  For some reason blogspot can't decide what my userid is and sets me off in a perpetual cycle of signing in. 
I am working on it.  But I wanted to thank those of your who have left comments.  They are greatly appreciated!  I created this blog to interact with more readers and I love hearing from you all.

Thank you!