I had dinner with our Senior Pastor from our Every Nation Church in Christchurch New Zealand. Brian (who is one of our fine campus ministers at Victory Fort) and I listened as we learned a lot from Bernhard Wewege.
Here are some of the parenting tips we learned from him:
1. LOVE YOUR SPOUSE.
Your children will grow up very secure as they see Mom and Dad sincerely take care of each other in good times and bad. They will not articulate how secure they feel especially as young tots, but this is going to be very clear as they grow into adulthood.
2. GET INVOLVED.
Know your kids’ friends. Find out what they like and they don’t like. Learn the things they love doing. Study your kids and get into it.
Recitals. Sporting events. Graduations. Exhibits. Musical shows.
Be sure to be there.
3. LEAVE ROOM FOR MISTAKES.
As parents, we don’t like our kids to commit the same mistakes we committed in the past. We try our very best to protect them so they avoid the pitfalls that life may bring.
Unfortunately, we can’t be GOD because we are NOT. We can’t be there 24/7. We just need to keep pounding on the principles we desire to lodge in their hearts and hope that when the time comes, they’ll have the wisdom to apply what they have learned.
4. MODEL FAITH.
We can’t tell them to live for God if we ourselves don’t. Devotions in the morning can’t be forced. They are modeled. Prayer times are not mandated. They are exemplified. Believing God for greater things can’t be decreed. They have to be exercised in front of our kids.
Model faith in Christ. Remember, much of it is caught not taught.
There is no greater parenting tip than to pray for your kids everyday.
Pastor Bernhard talked about praying for your kids’ hearts to have a tenderness toward the Holy Spirit.
Why? Many times, they actually know right from wrong. It is the tenderness to the Holy Spirit, to listen to His voice and prompting, that will make them have a desire to obey God and do the right thing.
I am so thankful for mentors like Pastor Bernhard who we can glean from and learn from so we can become the parents God designed us to be.