All parents want to be successful, but parenting is HARD, and having our kids “turn out good” today is challenging! The best place to start is by looking at the characteristics of successful parents that you have observed, and learning from them.
My husband and I wanted to do our best to raise our kids to love the Lord, and be prepared to serve Him when they grew up. We wanted them to have good, strong Christian character, and be prepared for life. So we spent time watching Godly parents that we looked up to, and spent time asking them questions as well.
We felt the parents were doing an awesome job, and it was reflected in their kids over the years. I want to share some of the things I noticed these parents did, that I think were key to their success.
Characteristics of Successful Parents
1. The loved God with all of their heart.
Their lives, not just their words, showed it. As a result, their children had a hunger for God, and developed a heart for Him. Their kids didn’t just go through the motions, but developed their own personal walk with the Lord.
We need to teach our children about God, encourage them to love Him and His Word, and to follow Him. However, we can’t force their hearts.
Our own burning passion for the things of God, and for pleasing Him, will inspire a similiar desire in our kids.
2. They weren’t too proud to seek advice and counsel.
Sometimes as parents, we are embarrassed when we are struggling with our children. We feel it’s because we’re doing something wrong, or we’re failing. We don’t want other people to know that our kids are doing certain things, because it will reflect back on our parenting, and make us look bad.
The truth is that most parents go through times with their children, and probably more so with their teens, where they face challenges.
The wise parent will seek Godly counsel. Talk to other parents who have raised good kids, and above all, seek counsel from your pastor.
My husband and I have gone to our pastor many, many times for counsel and guidance about how to handle different situations that have come up with our kids. I think this is so important, because sometimes we are so close to it, that it’s very hard to see the whole picture clearly.
Getting someone else’s perspective is always good.
I have a dear friend, full of wisdom, who was a pastor’s wife for many years. She was my “go to” person, when I was just not sure what to think, or how to handle something. She was always able to help me put things in perspective. All of us need people like that in our lives!
Parenting is too big of a responsibility for us to try to handle on our own. Seek wisdom!
It’s also very wise to read good books about parenting. Even when I was down to my last child at home, my 15 year old son, I still read things on parenting teens, despite having been through it 7 times alreadt! I needed reminders, and encouragement.
Don’t ever allow yourself to get to the place in your parenting where you feel like you have arrived, and have it all under control. God entrusted you with the job, so keep growing and learning in order to be the best parent you can be!
3. They had rules that were consistently enforced.
A good home must have rules, and the parents need to stay diligent about being consistent with the rules.
I certainly think we can over do and make everything focus on behavior, and looking right. However, rules help our children be more secure and boundaries make them feel loved.
Make sure you explain that your family rules are from God’s Word. God tells children to obey their parents; God says to be kind, not to lie, etc.
Always have a Bible basis for your rules, and when the kids break the rules, take them back to God’s Word and show them why it’s so important to live the way God says to. Let them know that is the pathway to God’s blessing.
Consistency is probably one of the hardest parts of parenting, but it’s so important. It’s not fair to have rules that are enforced randomly, rather than regularly.
4. They consistently prayed for their children daily.
If you aren’t already doing so, make a commitment to pray for your kids DAILY. Then let them KNOW you are praying for them! That lets them know you care, and it also lets them know that God is involved. This will keep their hearts softer when He convicts them.
I always tell parents that we need to work as though it all depends on us, but pray as though it all depends on Him! Praying consistently is probably one of the most IMPORTANT characteristics of successful parents!