As society changes, many things change. Culture changes, the church and its methods change, styles change, fads change, and one thing that does change is the way the majority of the parent’s parent their teenager. Parents seem to go through cycles just like culture, and they change and adapt to the culture. I want to give you a few “old-fashioned” parenting tips today that I think it would not hurt if we went back too. I was parented in a very conservative old-fashioned way, and many other families held to some of these principles, and I want to give you a few of the old-fashioned tips that parents may need to resort back too:
- Making church a priority– In my house, church was not an option. Seriously, I could have a head ache, but if I did not have a fever, I would be at church. It frustrated me to no end then, but today, I am so grateful, because I never have a problem or a thought of skipping church. Today though, that is not the case. I feel students skip church for homework, sports, fun activities or amusements, or with a slight little head ache that they claim to have when they are fine doing other things with the same head ache. I wonder if believers made church a higher priority if our communities and nation might be a bit different.
- The School Staff is the authority in the school– When I was growing up, if I got into trouble with a teacher (which happened regularly), my parents never took my side. Once again, this way of parenting frustrated me at the time, but today, it has taught me an incredible amount of respect and loyalty to my authority. I am amazed at the number of parents who fight to prove the teacher is wrong when their student clearly did wrong. In a way, we are unintentionally teaching our kids to get their way, and buck the authority that has been instituted above us. Parents, do not be afraid to admit and teach your kids that they have been wrong. It may hurt them at the time, but we need to grow a generation up who can admit their faults and failures.
- The Pastor’s words of wisdom means something to our families– I am not saying that everything that the pastor says, you must agree with. Now, if it is coming straight from the Bible, you are commanded to believe it. I am talking about the wisdom and principles that the pastor may point out in a counseling session. For instance, my pastor encouraged my parents not to have a television or computer in my room. It is not found in the Bible, but it was a principle that he had learned from experience, and my parents listed to it.
- Youth functions are non-negotiable if affordable– One thing that my parents did with me was take me to every youth function that our church did. Some of them, I did not enjoy, and some of them quite frankly were boring, but my parents wanted me to go anyway. Now, obviously, if they were expensive events, and we could not afford them, sometimes on occasion, I would not be able to attend. For the most part though, I was at everything, and it taught me an incredible commitment to the local church and its community. Today, we give our kids so many options that if we get time to be a part of the church doing an event, we will make it, but we must get the 10 other things on our list finished first. Be committed to the church, and teach your kids commitment to the local church and its functions.
- Full time Christian Service is a possibility– Now, I am not in any way saying that every kid should be full-time in the ministry. I am saying that it should always be a possibility for any kid though. After all, we are called to be a follower of Jesus regardless of our occupation. Parents, do not discourage your kid because they may want to go serve God out of the state, or even out of the country. My parents always have said, “they would rather me in the center of God’s will out of the country than out of God’s will next door to them.”
There are a lot of things about the “old-fashioned” way of parenting that I do not agree with, but I personally do not think that it would be a bad idea to get back to these 5 ways of parenting.