Talk a Lot…..

Talk A Lot - Parenting Like Hannah
Photo by EvelynGiggles
If you have a child under the age of two, you are probably used to conducting a running monologue for your child about everything. You tell him what you see, you ask her questions and then answer them yourself and probably thoroughly amuse bystanders on a regular basis.

Studies have shown you are doing the best thing for your child. The more words your child hears from you, the faster he will develop his own language skills. The constant exposure to your words imprints them in your child’s brain. Eventually she starts to understand those sounds have meaning and the meanings can get her something she wants more effectively than crying. (Maybe that is why my daughter learned to talk so early. I never was very skillful at deciding which cry was for what!)

I believe that is why it is so important we follow God’s command in Deuteronomy 11:19. The writer tells us God wants us to talk to our children about His commands while we are sitting at home, when we are walking on the road (or in our case riding in the car), when we lie down and when we get up. He even goes on to talk about writing the commands on our door frames and gates. God knows the words we say to our children become little tapes that play in their heads the rest of their lives. It makes sense, the more they hear certain words, the stronger those tapes will be.

What better tapes to have in your child’s head than the words and principles of God? I can still hear my mother’s voice quoting my grandmother. (Ok, she still lives just a few miles from me, but I mean when she is not around!)”Be sure your sins will find you out.” Those words probably gave me pause more than once when I was tempted to do something I thought no one would ever find out about.

If you don’t know the scriptures well, now is a great time to re-introduce yourself to God’s words. Many things we think we remember as scripture or are told by popular culture are in the Bible are not there at all. You need to make sure you put accurate tapes in your child’s head! Don’t worry if you have trouble memorizing the exact words of a particular passage of scripture. Making sure your child understands the basic principles of God’s laws is just as important.

So grab a Bible, refresh your own knowledge and start talking to your children! I would love to know what scriptures are the favorites you heard during your own childhood or ones you quote to your children. Message back to this post and I will create a list of all time “Mommy favorites” for quoting to children.

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Thereasa Winnett

Thereasa Winnett is the founder of Teach One Reach One and blogger at Parenting Like Hannah. She holds a BA in education from the College of William and Mary. She has served in all areas of ministry to children and teens for more than thirty years and regularly leads workshops for ministries and churches. She has conducted numerous workshops, including sessions at Points of Light’s National Conference on Volunteering and Service, the National Urban Ministry Conference, Pepperdine Bible Lectures, and Lipscomb’s Summer Celebration. Thereasa lives in Atlanta, GA with her husband Greg, where she enjoys reading, knitting, traveling and cooking. Their daughter Katrina, who has been an integral part of their service adventures, attends Pepperdine University.

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