The 30 Imperatives of Parenting #3


#3 – The Walls- The Power of No

When we train our children that our “no” means “no” everytime, no exeption,  we place boundaries around them.  It gives them a sense of security that there is a constant.  If we are not consistent with no or they are able to negotiate their way out of “no”. If this is the case this ultimately can cause a sense of frustration in our children.  Think about how many times at various sports games how frustrating it is when the referee or official is inconsistent in their calls.  Then the rules of the game don’t really matter.  It is the same in our homes.

Check out our whole series on “The Power of No” by clicking here.



The 30 Imperatives of Parenting #32018-09-27T13:56:39-04:00

The 30 Imperatives of Parenting # 2


#2 – The Foundation Of Life

One of the things that is extremely important to how secure a building is, is its foundation.  If there is a crack or it is not a secure foundation then the building will not stand.  The first major storm or winds and it will shift or crumble.  It is the same with our children.  What we lay as the foundation for living is equally important.  That needs to be our relationship with God.

We want our children’s faith to stand the tests and the temptations when they leave our home.  The number of youth group kids that leave church after they graduate high school is staggering, research shows it is anywhere from 65-94%.  Why? Because there is not a firm foundation built.  Church becomes just a way of life or something to do, they miss that a relationship with God is something that the entirety of life is built on.  Make sure that you as a family are making that a priority in your home.  Check out the series that we did recently about how to cultivate your child’s relationship with God, by clicking here.

Take the time to set your child’s life up on a firm foundation!



The 30 Imperatives of Parenting # 22018-01-18T11:23:00-04:00

The 30 Imperatives of Parenting #1


#1- The Motivational “Why”

The first thing that we need to do as we look at the 30 things that we must train our children in before they go out the door, is check our motivations as parents.  Where do our priorities truly lie?  If our priority is our job or solely providing for our family, then we will spend all of our time, energy and ultimately ourselves on that.  When we get home our spouse and children will get the “leftovers”.  We need to make the choice, daily sometimes, what our priority is.  Our priorities need to be first and foremost our relationship with God, next our marriage, and thirdly our children.  Of course we need to provide for our family but that cannot ensnare all of our time and energies.

As you drive home or get up in the morning, pray and make the choice of what your priority is.  That way you go into your time with your family intentionally.  There is no way to train your children in these thirty areas if we are not intentional and treat training as a priority.   Choose, through your relationship with God, to make your relationship with your spouse and children your first priority!



The 30 Imperatives of Parenting #12018-01-18T11:18:06-04:00

Teaching Your Child to Serve | Part 5



The final “E” in the training process is encouragement.  Think about your parenting style.  Are you an encourager?  What do you encourage for?  Many of us encourage our children when they do great in sports or when they do well in school but have a hard time encouraging the small successes every day.  Teaching our children to have an attitude of serving others is something we must reinforce through encouragement.  One idea, which we have discussed before, is starting a family board in the kitchen.  On this board you can write up when one of your children does something to serve another person.  Even something small should be written up.  If it is a white board you can make a weekly game to see who has the most acts of service by the end of the week and reward that child.

In order for us to be able to encourage our children we have to be very aware of their actions in order to catch them “doing right”.  It is so easy to get caught up and either not pay attention when those good moments happen or be too focused on the difficult behaviors and miss praising the good.

However you choose to encourage your children make sure that you do it.  It is a big part of reinforcing the behavior and positive reinforcement is most often what make the good behaviors a habit!!



Teaching Your Child to Serve | Part 52017-12-07T11:22:27-04:00

Teaching Your Child to Serve | Part 4



After taking the time to expose our children to different opportunities in serving others, it is also important to give them time to experience this on their own.  Especially as a child gets older it is important to look for these experiences for them to practice on their own and to reap the rewards of doing something for someone else.  It is a different experience from “having” to do something because the rest of your family is involved.

One place to look for opportunities for your child is their school.  When they are telling you about their day they may mention a perfect opportunity for serving someone. There may be something that a child can do to help a teacher.  Even doing something so small as not getting involved when a group of people are picking on a student or making the big step to tell them to stop.  Or simply making a point to be nice to the student, even though it may be unpopular, is putting their needs above you own.

As a child gets older another awesome way to give them a wonderful experience in serving others on their own is mission trips.  Most churches give opportunities for youth to do a mission trip at least once a year.  These life-changing experiences are such awesome lessons not only in serving others, but also teach gratitude for how much we have been given.

Take the time to help your child find places to serve on their own.  It will help to develop this important life long habit.


Teaching Your Child to Serve | Part 42017-12-07T11:21:40-04:00

Teaching Your Child to Serve | Part 3



Another “E” in the training Process is exposure.  We as parents must set the example first in our service of others but secondly we must look for opportunities for our children to serve.  We spoke yesterday that this begins in our own home with serving our family members but we after this area we can look for bigger areas of ministry.  Check with your church to see if there are any families in need of meals.  In any church at any time there may be many families who could use this service due to illness or a new baby.  Make it a family service project and get your kids involved in every area from shopping for the food to preparing it.

Another area of service could be checking with your church to see if there are any elderly who need help around their house with basic projects that they can’t do anymore.  Make a family service day even one day a month, especially during time off, is a great way to teach kids.

There are always local ministries who need help as well in various ways.  For Sheridan House, we can always use volunteers to help with any of our events.  Looking for ways to expose your children to service in this capacity is a great way to train.  Make a day of it, often, and serve together as a family.  Service should be part of a families DNA.  To those of us who have been given so much through the God’s grace, service should be our way of showing our gratitude for what He has done for us.



Teaching Your Child to Serve | Part 32017-12-07T11:20:57-04:00

Teaching Your Child to Serve | Part 2


Setting The Example

Like many areas of parenting, teaching your child to serve is easy when you are able to set an example for them to follow.  There are many ways to set the example.  The first is simply daily serving your closest neighbors, your family.  It will be easy to teach your children to serve if it is already a habit that you have.  In order to create this habit, make it a goal to serve either your spouse or a child at least once everyday.   Many moms spend their days serving the needs of the small children around them.  An easy way to help create the habit in your small children is to have them help you serve “daddy.”  Maybe when he gets home from work have one of them help you bring daddy his favorite drink.  You can even make it a game to see who can do something to serve daddy first.

Another way to teach a servant attitude is by being aware of who you can serve while you are out and about.  Again with children, especially on the long days they are home from school, make it another game to see who can spot a need that you as a family can fill.   Like maybe helping an elderly person load their car with their groceries, or carrying an umbrella when its raining, even taking the shopping carts back to the designated area instead of leaving it by the car.

For better or worse children are excellent mimics.  Let it count in their favor and be a great example of serving the people around you!



Teaching Your Child to Serve | Part 22017-12-07T11:20:12-04:00

Teaching Your Child to Serve | Part 1


Why It’s Important To Raise My Child To Serve

There are so many important reasons to teach your child to serve others.  Serving others helps a child learn not to be so self centered, it raises a child to be marriageable and helps them to be great employees.  The most important reason to teach our children to serve is the fact that it grows them into becoming someone that God can use mightily.

If we think back to many of the Old Testament greats, they were servants.  When we train our children to serve it is something that God may not have to do later on in life, think Joseph and Moses.  Both of these men had to spend some time in humbling experience to teach them this concept before they could be used mightily in the plan God had for them.

Another reason that we need to teach our children to serve is that Jesus himself tells us how important it is to serve others.  The religious leaders tried to trap him by asking what the greatest commandment was in Luke 10:27. “He answered, “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’; and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.”  How we show our love for God is by serving those around us.  Create an attitude of service in your home today!



Teaching Your Child to Serve | Part 12017-12-07T11:18:30-04:00