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I posted last week about “Raising G-rated Kids in an X-rated World,” the sermon series our church is going through right now.

Let’s do a quick review of last week, shall we?

Last week, our youth pastor spoke about how kids need

1. BELIEF (their parents believing in them, and their parents believing in each other)

2. PRESENCE (AKA time)

3. MEMORIES (traditions, adventures, letters, photographs)

Today our senior pastor spoke about the next three points, three more things kids need from caring adults.

4. Kids need encouragement. (careful words, not careless words)
Proverbs 12:18
1 Thess. 5:11
a) Look for kids to do good and praise them.
b) Go beyond performance.
Language with kids should.not.be shame-based or performance-oriented.

Think about it. If you were to receive praise right now (good job on that solo!), and two seconds later be criticized (you messed up right at the beginning there), which would you remember more?

Most people remember crticism more than praise. No matter if you’re praised by ten people and criticized by one. The criticism is remembered more.

I’ve read that for every one (1) negative remark you make about yourself, it takes ten (10) to combat it.

Think about that in terms of children, students.

5. Kids need role models.
1 Chronicles 29:17
Deut. 6:5-8
Pastor brought up this point: Your kids know you’re not perfect—they’d just like you to admit it once in a while.
Kids need authenticity. He also brought up the idea of doing something wrong, such as a parent telling a little white lie at the movie theater (cinema ;)) so that they don’t have to pay an extra fee (never heard of this before!). He talked about how what should happen, is the next day, Mom or Dad (whoever made the mistake) should admit it and then go back and pay the difference.
He also brought up something specific to Christian parenting: saying that you want your children to decide for themselves whether or not they’re going to follow Christ. He brought up that God is not just an option.
I didn’t necessarily agree with that one, because I think following Christ should be a choice that is made individually and not forced upon someone. But I do agree that if you are Christian parent, and you wholeheartedly belive in God and want your kids to beleive it, too, you should do everything in your power to make them see WHY you love Christ.
And then he brought up his oldest son, how he needed another Christian male role model in his life as he was growing up, and how a man and his wife stepped in and led that age group in the church (their previous church). He said that this couple had their son (and others) over to their house, and that’s where A (their son) learned about flight simulators. He is now an Air Force pilot.
You never what kind of an impact you’re going to have on someone’s life.

6. Kids need discipline. (cautious discipline, and boundaries)
Prov 3:11-12
Prov 29:15
Eph 6:4
Proverbs 29 says “rod of correction.” Many people take that to mean literally beating their children. But no. Think back to Psalm 23. The LORD is my shepherd… Now, stop right there. Think about a shepherd. What does he do? He herds sheep, of course. And how does he herd his sheep? With a rod, used to guide them. Not hurt them. That’s what it says “your rod and your staff, they comfort me.” (Emphasis mine.) We are not to punish our children when they do wrong, but to discipline them. There is a difference. (Namely, discipline is out of love, where punishment is out of anger. Any time you hit an extreme in parenting, you’re losing.)
We have to understand, as my lovely Momma S so wonderfully quoted it after service today: “Understand that each child has a unique personality crafted by God. Each is an original masterpiece.”
Every one of us is different, unique, with our own personalities. We all learn differently. We all react differently to different things. Thus, we all need to be disciplined a little differently. There is no “one size fits all” when it comes to a model for disciplining children.

Next week we’ll hit our final installment of the G-rated Kids sermon series, and after that, who knows?

In our church, in just the last couple of years, they’ve started this tradition on Father’s Day. You can nominate a man for the “Luxury Box.” This basically just means that he (along with maybe two or three other men) gets to sit up front in a chair or on a couch during the Father’s Day service. Last year they were given pop (soda) and a free CD. It’s kind of fun. I’m thinking I might nominate my dad, partly due to everything he’s gone through the last couple of months. He hasn’t complained a whole lot, and I admire him for that. I’m still thinking about it, but I’d better decide soon, because the sheet is due by Friday!

Anyway. That was this morning’s sermon. I found it pretty interesting, even if I didn’t necessarily understand or agree with bits and pieces here and there. Overall, I appreciated it. It reminded me that I need to stop being so crabby during Junior High events, and try to love and praise instead of grumbling about how they’re always loud… So it’s not just parents who need to know this stuff! 🙂