Speaking of Parenthood

Title: Speaking of Parenthood
Category: Family Issues
Subject: Parenting
Speaking of Parenthood...
With Dr. Vince Hefner, Pastor
First Baptist Church
Cherryville, North Carolina

After successfully raising four children into teenagers I have discovered that I don't know anything, at least according to my children. Of course they would never say that out loud, nor would they write it down on paper, but I know what they are thinking!

I can see their expressions when I ask them questions concerning just about anything from what is on television, who or what is playing on the radio, or what is appropriate to wear out in public. I sense that my teenage children secretly ask one another how their father has enough sense to get out bed each morning because he doesn't know anything about the "Real world."

I'm not that difficult to talk to about life, but I do have some strong opinions that my children consider crazy. First of all, I think teenagers should work around the home and if they can find a good, safe, part-time job, should take the job and learn the value of work and money. A spoiled child will sooner or later have to make their own way in the world, and the sooner they realize they are responsible for their actions, the better off they will be. My children agree with me on this one, but this is just about the only one. I don't think a youth should be out on the town past 11:00 p.m., on any night. I don't believe a young girl should call a boy, ever. I am showing my age, but in my day the boy pursued the girl. If a girl called me when I was a teenager my parents would have thought I had borrowed money from her and not paid her back. Why else would a girl call a boy? I believe all children should respect adults as well as their peers. It has never hurt me to hold a door open for anybody, or to say, "Yes sir, yes ma'am, etc..." When it comes to dressing, modesty should rule the day. I believe that young people should be covered up and clean, I don't care what the other youth of America wear or how they act, I want my children to look presentable. These are just a few rules that would make the world run smoother if they were enforced.

I am considering starting a club for parents who agree with me on these rules for youth. I want to call the club "No Way." I will make up tee-shirts and hats with our motto printed on them and when a teenager comes from their room wearing something somebody would wear on a rock video, the parent could point to the motto on the hat or shirt and have the youth repeat with them "NO WAY." It may not catch on, but then again... Of course I am using humor to help me with parenting through the teenage years. I love my children very much, and even though I have raised them, they have their own ideas about life and the pursuit of happiness. It is my prayer that what I have taught them will stick and the things of the world will slip away. I hope one day that I have a conversation with my adult children and have them look at me as though I know what I am talking about, and that I make sense when I respond to a question.

A Christian parent is supposed to raise their children according to the teachings of Jesus Christ. This is a lifetime process of reading the Bible, taking the children to Church, and living a Christian life in front of them. One day when you are old and gray, your children will be able to say that you lived what you taught! Proverbs 16:31-32 says, "Gray hair is a crown of glory; it is gained by living a godly life. Better to be patient than powerful; better to have self-control than to conquer a city." Remember, don't give in to sin. Think about it!