God wants us to capture the heart of our children.
Man looks on the outward appearance but God looks on the heart. Let’s not settle as a parent for outward conformity. It’s easy, and faster, but in time, will yield fruit that is not good.
Jesus rebuked the Pharisees for being white washed graves full of dead men’s bones. They (the Pharisees) were the outward standard of godliness. Yet in reality they were an affront to God.
So do you want to capture the heart of your children? Here are three tips.
Capturing our child’s heart takes time in discipline.
Discipline should take time to explain the offense to your child. You can have them verbalize what they have done. (This is a very powerful part of discipline). Tell them that you love them. Have them apologize and ask for forgiveness. Pray with them. Take time for restoration.
Make a conscious effort to transfer from fear to love in your discipline. Children need to know they can trust you with the truth without some form of ungodly anger whether it is an outburst or withdrawing. Children who are parented in this way will often become skilled liars in an effort to avoid these consequences. Love them like God loves you.
6 “For whom the Lord loves He chastens, And scourges every son whom He receives.”[a]7 If[b] you endure chastening, God deals with you as with sons; for what son is there whom a father does not chasten? 8 But if you are without chastening, of which all have become partakers, then you are illegitimate and not sons. 9 Furthermore, we have had human fathers who corrected us, and we paid them respect. Shall we not much more readily be in subjection to the Father of spirits and live? 10 For they indeed for a few days chastened us as seemed best to them, but He for our profit, that we may be partakers of His holiness. 11 Now no chastening seems to be joyful for the present, but painful; nevertheless, afterward it yields the peaceable fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it. “
Capturing your child’s heart takes time in observing.
In marriage one of you will be more prone to pick up on your children’s emotions when they are hurting, troubled or searching. Please do not ignore this and take the effort to search them out. Listen to your spouse when they encourage you to act. This will often take time (to peel back the layers,) as they need you for advice and will need to know you care. Be accessible and be sure that they know that you are there for them.
I cannot say how many times we have come to the end of an exhausting day, finally laying down to bed, and had my wife will say “you need to go check on ….., something isn’t right.”
Or the nights when we call a child down from bed at the end of the day to reach their hearts. Often we will be prompted as parents to seek those moments with our children, but it is so easy to put it off and eventually forget about it.
Many wounds, hurts and fears in our children that could have resulted in “baggage “in their lives have been resolved because of taking this time.
They have learned to trust us and been strengthened in their own ability to communicate.
Capturing your child’s heart takes time in activities.
Our time with our children before they become adults is SHORT. We should be careful to choose what we expose our children to, knowing that their life experiences will have lasting consequences.
We have been blessed in our home to begin to see the peaceable fruit of righteousness lived out in our adult children, but, we are far from finished.
Taking the time to build the bond of trust, has built relationships with our children that are open and growing. They are able to seek our guidance without fear, as well as encourage us.
We are far from perfect in our home, but we know the One who is and He has made all of the difference.