Tuesday, August 28, 2007

How to Chase After A Child's Heart

There are warning signs.

You realize you do not have the heart of your child(ren). What do you do now?

You also know this is God's heart for your family. You cannot neglect this situation because to do so would be sinning. But the concept is new to you, where would you begin? With every situation different, solutions to each situation will vary as each individual and family are unique. Here are some timeless points to begin with---let's take a look:

1. Love. We must love them to the point where they do not doubt that we love them. We can show this is a myriad of ways and should also include hugs, kisses, pats on the back, and physical closeness. When a child is struggling with a bad attitude our natural tendency is to withdraw or be angry with the child---but instead we should continue to show an abundance of love and encouragement, it might even call for patience and gentleness. If all they ever hear from us is criticism and correction they probably won't feel loved.

2. Time. It is important to spend time with our children. Do not be fooled into thinking we can spend quality time verses quantity time. It takes time and effort to build a relationship that keeps a heart. Time apart actually distances the relationship. We should try to find everday type of outings along with special outings to enjoy with our children. Make sure you include your children in projects.

3. Smile. Does your face light up when your children talk to you? Or do you show annoyance and irritation? Do not give your best smiles for company and strangers outside your home. Instead give your best to those you love and whom count the most.We must learn to smile at our children and with that we communicate love and acceptance.

4. Praise. If we want to keep our children's hearts they must feel they are valued in our eyes. We must strengthen them, encourage, build them up so that their hearts are drawn to the Lord and us.

5. Forgiveness. We must ask forgiveness from our children when we wrong them. We are sinners and at some point or another we will sin. We must keep an eye out ways we have sinned against them and ask forgiveness for the transgression. Some examples: yelling, anger, etc. If we do not do this bitterness can grow in the relationship.

6. Conversation. Keep the doors wide open for conversation, be available to talk and have favorite times of the day where you can come together and share. This is a strong relationship builder.

7. Anger. Anger can be very damaging. If you deal with anger, learn to get your anger under control. Apologize when you exhibit anger for it can destroy relationships. I recommend the tape from Dr. SM Davis "Freedom From The Spirit of Anger". Anger can be overcome and self control can be learned in time.

We must be active and not grow weary in keeping our children's heart so we can be effective parents as we point these cherished ones to the Lord. Ultimately, it is the Lord who will help you on this endeavor so be sure to seek Him first for help. There are also two other points I'd also like to share in this series. My next post Bad Appetites and Biblical Sheltering will address this. These are also important aspects of chasing after child's heart, until then....


Rhonda Devine said...

Thank you for sharing these--very good and helps me to examine my own heart and the hearts of my children.
It is easy to always be about the next task, even to be reading while sitting resting. But I am finding that there needs to be times of just sitting near my children without doing anything and this gives them a chance to see they have my full attention so they can share something with me that gives me glimpses into what they are thinking about:)
Til next time,

Mary Isabella said...

I think these are good tips for young Mothers.Iam now a grandmother and i find them to be very helpful also.

ShabbyInTheCity said...

I wish I could physically place this in the heads of parents everywhere. I feel sometimes like I am the only one who REALLY loves children. They are too often getting the short end of the stick.
I hope you get thousands of readers...I'll ask God to send them!

Anna S said...

Excellent advice for all mothers and mothers-to-be!

Anonymous said...

Excellent ideas and a great series of posts.

Here are articles along the same lines -



Grafted Branch @ Restoring the Years said...

This and your other post are both lovely and worth the read for anyone who finds themselves in the unenviable position of living with a child that doesn't like them.

I'm going to direct my bloggy friends over here.


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