Blog by Lisa Nau
I've been thinking a lot as I put my first website together. It reminds me of when we put an addition on our house. Every decision matters and every detail has a decision. What pictures should I use and where? What font and how big? Do I get a video on there even if it's awkward just to have one there? It all feels big and it all feels pressing.
It's actually not all that different from parenting. People always tell you to enjoy the time with your children because it will all go quickly. We know this is true and yet, there's a meltdown over the wrong stuffie in the car with our toddler, we are late to swim team with our elementary age children or there's too much homework to be wrestled with while we’re trying to keep track of all of our teen. The days fly, the weeks fly, the years dissipate. The details overwhelm us. They all seem important. Our hearts want to enjoy every moment with these precious children but life continually gets in the way.
In Biblical Parenting, developing and maintaining relationship is vital for any of the other tools to be truly effective. Is there anything we can do to slow things down? No. But there is something we can do to enjoy it a little more and get more of our hearts desire as we just try to survive. It’s not hard. It’s not expensive. It’s not rocket science. However, it does take being intentional and determined with just a sprinkle of planning. The key is creating one-on-one moments.
Quality or Quantity? Both!
Science has determined that quality time and quantity time are of equal importance and I believe that with prayer and planning we can accomplish both while going through our daily routines. Plan daily on one-on-one time with each child. This seems like a no-brainer but how often do days go by until we realize that we have touched base with no one? It doesn't take more than 5 minutes a day with each child.. This is less time than grabbing a coffee or calling a friend. No one needs you more than your child.
· Sit down with them and just ask what they're doing.
· Find out what they like about what they're doing.
· Ask how their friends are.
· Ask what is on their minds and what you can pray for.
· Look them in the eye and tell them you love them.
Write this on your to-do list each and every day and watch your relationship with your child bloom.
Swift to Hear
The bible tells us in James 1:19 "Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath". This is difficult to do if we are swept up in the moment, just reacting to each event as it comes. If we are driven by the emotion and exhaustion of the day, it is a struggle to listen and speak slowly. However, if we take the time to listen, connect, make eye contact, and hear what our children have to say with no judgment or lesson to be learned, we will hear and our wrath will be slower.
Time goes by whether we like it or not. Our children will grow whether we are watching or not. When we take a few minutes a day to connect with them, we give ourselves the chance to miss out on less. If we listen, we can show our love as well as gain valuable information on what makes our children tick. Building the relationship with our children opens the door to all the other benefits of Biblical Parenting.
What’s the Plan?
This is not hard. This does take intentionality and determination. It also takes planning. Put an alarm on your phone now. Write it in your book or calendar and make it happen. It will not be long until your newborn is running, your elementary aged child is in High School and your teen is married and having children of their own. Don't let business take this precious time from you.
Ephesians 5:15-17 says for us to “Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil. Therefore, do not be foolish, but understand what the Lord’s will is.” Be wise. Make use of every opportunity. Help your child be all God made them to be. Every detail has a decision and every decision matters. Stop. Listen. Love.