We had been married for about a year and a half when we had our first child, a boy. He was a sweet baby, so content, and didn’t cause a lot of fuss the first six months of his life.
Then, he started teething, and crying, and as he grew, started hitting and biting other children. I am undecided which is worse, having your child being bitten by another child, or it being your child that is biting the other mother’s child!
Whats a mother to do? When is it still innocence, and how does training need to take place? This is especially hard to figure out when they are small. As they grow older, you are better able to judge the intent of the heart.
But raising children that will be godly, moral adults is no small task. However, it’s very important that we as parents dedicate our time to teaching them the true way.
Ever since having our first child, the subject of raising our children right has been dear to my heart. It didn’t take me long to realize there was a lot I didn’t know about training children.
When should we extend grace, and when do we need to discipline? I’ve always felt a child ought to come with a manual.
Then I realized, God did provide one, through his word, and it has quite a bit to say about the subject of training our children in the way they should go.
Over the years I’ve also read several different books about training children, but the most important parts of it comes down to what the Bible says.
Keys to Training Up Children In the Way They Should Go
1. Have a deep love and concern for their souls, for we all want to one day rejoice and praise God together in heaven.
2.Dedicate your children to God, and remember that he has given them to you only for a short season.
3.Praise your child for the good he does, reprove him for wrong doing. The more you find to encourage, the less there is to discourage.
4.Teach them that obedience brings blessing, disobedience bring a curse. Teach them to obey by loving use of biblical discipline. Consistency is key.
5.Lift up our children in constant prayer and intercession. The power of a fervent prayer of a righteous man (or woman) is something we don’t consider carefully enough.
6.Read the Bible to our children daily. Teach them to fear the Lord, to turn away from sin. Teach them to memorize bible verses, to carry with them in their heart.
7.Be careful who your children are friends with, because “evil communications corrupt good manners.” 1 Corinthians 15:33. Protect them from ungodly influences.
8.Mom and Dad, we have to be a united front. Agree (or be silent) in everything in front of your children. Disagreements should be discussed privately. Children benefit greatly from a peaceful home.
9.Take them to church and Sunday school. Cultivate an interest in their hearts for the Bible. Read to them stories of Ruth, Esther and David.
10.Be careful of what your children read and see. We need to protect them when they are young, and teach them when they are older on how to avoid evil. They will encounter evil in this world, and as they get older, we need to teach them how to fight against it.
11.Keep them from spending money wastefully. Teach them about godly stewardship, how everything we have belongs to the Lord. We are only caretakers of it, and are accountable for every decision we make.
12.Teach them to seek first the Kingdom of God, and to lay up treasures in heaven and not here on earth. This life is but a vapor, a short period of time in eternity. Having a relationship with Jesus is more important then any money here on earth.
13.Teach them about the great love God has for them, and that he has a specific purpose for their lives.
14.Always take time to answer their questions. It’s no wonder that children equal love to the time we have for them.
15.Watch and pray with, and for your children. By example and exhortation encourage them to live lives devoted to prayer.
16.Teach them the importance and POWER of prayer. It is our biggest weapon against evil.
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With time, our son stopped hitting and biting others. It did require a LOT of training sessions, and much more patience then I had. An important thing that I learned along the way was that small children have to know what is required of them, otherwise your training is for naught.
These guidelines are in no way listed in order of importance, and the list isn’t extensive. Yet, even following all of these, continually, day after day, is hard.
We are humans ourselves, and continually fail. However, doing our best to follow this list will help us to remember what is truly important as we train our children in the way they should go, so they will not depart from it.
Share with me your thoughts. I’d gladly hear from you!