Parenting

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Posted 5/17/16 at 9:52 PM | Trace Embry

1 Example of Being Firm and Compassionate at the Same Time

Parents: did you know you can be firm and compassionate at the same time?

In a time where kids are surrounded by more temptation than before, exercising compassion is a must. This does not mean a standards change.

Picture Provided By New Life Church Collingwood

Standards are found in Scripture. When our kids are caught in a sin, it’s important to exercise firm discipline.
However, do this in such a way that communicates you are not acting out of complete disgust with them or disbelief in them.
Your teen needs to sense your compassion and love for them.

Practical Application
Statistics show that our kids are getting an incredible amount of sexual messages and images on TV alone—and from the very programs and advertisements we watch with them.
Not to mention the messages they get through other forms of digital technology. Folks, listen to me closely, a smartphone is an adult toy! FULL POST

Posted 5/16/16 at 4:36 PM | Marianne Kurtz

What Is Unconditional Love Anyway?

Is unconditional love, love that doesn’t judge our actions?

Are we supposed to judge each other’s action?

What is the difference between loving a person where they are and telling them the truth in love? If you don’t tell them the truth does that mean you don’t love them?

All of the truth in all of those statements is correct. However, the main thing, in my opinion, that is left out is the actual love.

If you are judging somebody for their actions are you still filled with L-O-V-E for them? I mean the real LOVE. The one that actually still loves the person and will walk with them through a time of change that might be difficult to understand. I don’t mean love the sin or the decision…of course not!

When I went through a hard time, I did some things that I’m not particularly proud of and my long-time friends, that I thought I could trust, abandoned me because I was in sin. But, really just because the sin can be seen on the outside doesn’t mean that sin that can’t be seen. Well, I did my own little search and I did not have to look far to find the answer. FULL POST

Posted 5/10/16 at 7:25 PM | Trace Embry

Why Now is the Time to Create a Safe Environment

The 21st century has produced opportunities for kids to be entertained around the clock.

Christian parents need to set firm boundaries to create a safe environment.

Picture provided by Elvin

Science is confirming that much of our kids’ behavioral problems could actually stem from a glut of digital stimuli. Many unsuspecting parents are grateful that Junior isn’t out causing trouble.

Yet, these same parents are missing the brain damage taking place.

Monitoring and limiting digital technology is a must. However, in today’s culture this may be more of a sacrifice on your part.

How to be Confident After you Create Safe Environment

To create a safe environment you will need to set boundaries to prevent media from causing harm to your family.

This means you need to make decisions that most of today’s culture won’t understand. FULL POST

Posted 5/9/16 at 9:48 AM | Marianne Kurtz

There Is More to Life Than Protecting Your Heart

I do believe that we need to guard our hearts from being hurt, taken advantage of, and really just never want to be too gullible. You just need the right amount of gullible so that you do not end up looking at everything through the eyes of someone jaded by life.

The past several months has me thinking about exactly what jaded means.

I remember the Aerosmith song “Jaded” and back then I didn’t really get it. Now, all these years later…I completely get it. I never wanted my kids to feel this and so I taught them to protect themselves. You can let people in but you must protect yourself, don’t get too close. All of sudden, I saw everything like a fast forward movie and how now I am seeing spending time with people as value added instead of before I was jaded in everything.

Don’t get to close…people die, move away, and leave. So, love them but always remain separate. That is how I got by without shedding a tear for about 18 years because if you don’t let people in your heart you won’t get hurt. FULL POST

Posted 5/6/16 at 1:18 PM | Julie Miller

5 Reasons to Banish “Mom Guilt” For Good

(C) Fotolio

While having a baby is one of the most rewarding event any couple can experience, there is more pressure than ever on working women to be super-moms. We’ve been sold the idea that in order to raise a functional child, you have to follow a strict set of rules, including inflexible bedtimes, breastfeeding and absolutely no non-organic treats.

Although these ideas promote good parenting, no child-rearing advice is set in stone, and mothers (and fathers) often end up feeling guilty for straying even slightly from these guidelines. The problem is, “Mom Guilt” isn’t healthy or helpful. In fact, it’s far worse for your little one than an occasional late bedtime or sweet treat.

Next time you feel a wave of Mom Guilt (Or Dad Guilt) coming on, remember this:

1. Breast isn’t always best FULL POST

Posted 5/3/16 at 7:55 PM | Trace Embry

2 Ways to Proactively Address Media Addictions in Your Home

Parents should proactively address media addictions within their home.

We must be alert and discerning to recognize idolatrous behavior in regards to media. But where do we start?

Picture provided by Yoshihide Nomura

Monitor Use

Media addictions in our youth are not derived only by the content, but by how often we allow them to be entertained.

Long before the digital age – A.W. Tozer said “I believe that entertainment and amusements are the work of the enemy to keep dying men from knowing they’re dying and to keep enemies of God from remembering they’re enemies.”

Constant amusement can simply numb us through life.

You can proactively address media addictions, as well as keep your teen aware and alert, by putting appropriate time limits on media interactions. FULL POST

Posted 4/28/16 at 9:09 AM | Ron Edmondson

The Greatest Prayer a Parent Could Ever Pray

I love the story of Manoah and his wife. They had been unable to give birth to a child. It was apparently their greatest desire in life. One day an angel of God brought them good news a child was to be born.

I think one reason I identify with the story is the huge number of people in our ministry who have struggled with infertility. It’s a huge hidden pain in the church. It’s one reason we have always highlighted adoption and foster-parenting.

But, when Manoah’s wife came to him with the news they were having a child, Manoah immediately did what happens to many men and women when they discover they are about to be parents. He grew up – literally – and he indicated this by what he did first. He prayed!

He asked for God’s provision!

It’s funny how “life” has to happen sometimes before we fall on our knees.

In the moment – realizing they were about to be blessed with one of life’s greatest blessings – Manoah prayed the most important prayer a parent can ever pray: FULL POST

Posted 4/26/16 at 7:55 PM | Trace Embry

2 Unique Ways to Position Your Teen for Success

How can you position your teen for success?

You may be surprised at the many unique ways you can position your teen for success.

Picture Provided by Nila Sivatheesan

Help Your Teen Find His Gift in the Trades

There used to be a day when something would break in your home and your dad could fix it.

And if dad couldn’t fix it, then the neighbor could.

Today, however, it’s easier to buy something new or hire a repairman.

Fixing things together with your teen is actually a tool for building relationships and teachable moments.

Parents, while your child is still young help him discover his interests and talents.

It just may be that honing a trade may position your teen for success instead of four years of college. Especially in today’s computer age there are tremendous opportunities for success and personal satisfaction in the trades. FULL POST

Posted 4/25/16 at 8:15 AM | Marianne Kurtz

Communication is Also Key

Communication is Key as well…

One of the main things I always say is that consistency is key and it is true, consistency is key but, communication is key as well.

A friend of mine asked that I write about this.

My sons and I have always had great communication. From when they were small, I tried to teach them to not be afraid to communicate. I’m not talking about sharing emotions and that type thing. What I mean is this…

When my oldest was about 14 or maybe 15 I had an amazing discovery happen. It was a typical day at work and my coworker was getting married soon and was reading this book, I do not know the name, and was telling me about this part in the book where the author said that a man and a woman can be staring at like a doorknob and the woman has the potential to be thinking about a million things, but the man has the potential to be thinking about nothing at all. My coworker continued to talk about the book but I was stuck. “What do you mean?” I asked. “A guy could be thinking about nothing? How is it possible to not think about a thing?” I could not believe it. All of a sudden I saw the look on my sons face every time I would ask him if something was wrong because he was staring at something. To me, that meant he was thinking about something that was bothering him. That’s what it would have been to me… “Maybe I should I do this, or that, or I wonder if I should change around the furniture in the other room”… get it? Just always thinking something. I was flabbergasted! FULL POST

Posted 4/19/16 at 7:54 PM | Trace Embry

How to Address the Problem of Self Injurious Behavior

The problem of self-injurious behavior in the lives of our teens is a tough topic to discuss.

Millions claim cutting themselves relieves their pain.

Picture Provided by mattwalker69

What pain? It’s the pain that comes from the chaos and insecurity of a life without boundaries and no one to enforce them.

In general, kids who cut on themselves are most often those who’ve been exposed to, and engaged in, excessive sinful activity without intervention.

My theory is that today’s teenagers who struggle with cutting themselves are trying to, without being cognitively aware of it, atone for their own sin. All they know is that their own shed blood makes things feel better.

Teenage cutting and self-injurious behavior is an epidemic today!

This ought to tell us that something is radically wrong with our entire culture.

If cutting is an issue with your child, seek help! Without being accusatory, assure your child that Jesus Christ has already shed His blood for the sins of the whole world–including all of theirs. FULL POST

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