A few days ago, my daughter met with one of our closest friends, Carla, together with some of her peers.
Since Janina was a young girl, we’ve tried to connect her with people who can bring input in her life. We were deliberate and intentional. We wanted to look for adults who have the same principles and convictions as we have and impart those values into the lives of our children.
We wanted to find key individuals who can be the right kind of influence for our kids.
According to a research conducted by Mark Kelly of Lifeway,
“Teens who had at least one adult from church make a significant time investment in their lives … were most likely to keep attending church. More of those who stayed in church – by a margin of 46% to 28% – said five or more adults at church had invested time with them personally and spiritually.”
But more than staying in church, we’re more concerned about “staying” and cultivating the relationship she has with God.
The older they get, the more important it is for them to have other perspectives and different voices in their lives telling them the same things but in a different way.
You would probably be able to relate with me when your child quotes a teacher, coach, mentor and act on what they’ve heard while you’re there on the sideline saying, “But I’ve been telling you that for the past 13 years!”
They were hearing it in a different way because they were at a different stage…
Because of this, we need to discern as parents what stage our kids are already in which may merit a different approach.
For 0-6 year olds, that’s usually what I’d call the TELLING stage.
We tell them, “go to sleep”, “brush your teeth”, “pick up your toys”, “take a bath”.
For 7-12 year olds, that would be the TEACHING stage.
This is the stage where we begin to release our kids to do things on their own.
They learn to study for their test, change their clothes, eat on their own…
For 13-18 year olds, this is the COACHING stage.
Because they become more independent, we slowly release them to make their own decisions.
We are there to coach them to make sure they make the right decisions.
For those 19 year olds and above, I would call that the FRIENDSHIP stage.
Mentoring… coaching… teaching… all rolled into one.
They now transition into adulthood and hopefully by the grace of God, we’ve been able to help them stand on their own feet as they fully make their own decisions.
They are released to their own destiny without us and just like an arrow (Psalm 127), we pray that they will hit their mark.
Ultimately, our goal as parents is to transition them from being dependent on us to becoming more dependent on God… less on us and more on Him.
We will not be with our kids 24/7… we won’t and we can’t.
But Someone will. And our kids cultivating that relationship and dependence on their Heavenly Father will help them make the right decisions in the future.
Below is an amazing video on the power of forgiveness.
“Forgiveness is the key that unlocks the door of resentment and the handcuffs of hatred. It is a power that breaks the chains of bitterness and the shackles of selfishness.” (Corrie Ten Boom)
“Unforgiveness denies the victim the possibility of parole and leaves them stuck in the prison of what was, incarcerating them in their trauma and relinquishing the chance to escape beyond the pain.” (T.D. Jakes)
“Every time you ask for forgiveness, you recognize that the biggest problems you face in life exist inside of you, not outside of you.” (Paul David Tripp)
“You will never forgive anyone more than God has already forgiven you.” (Max Lucado)