Archive | Character Training

4 Tips for Helping Kids Deal With Emotions in Godly Ways

4 Tips for Helping Kids Deal With Emotions in Godly Ways - Parenting Like HannahGrowing up is emotional. Your body is constantly changing. You are learning all sorts of new things – sometimes the hard way. Bad things happen because you live in a fallen world. You often feel like you are never doing things the way everyone else expects you to do them. Your emotions are swirling and confusing. The emotions you are feeling are often so very strong, they surprise and frighten even you.

Unfortunately, all of the emotions caused by life as a child can become overwhelming. As a result, kids are often tempted to act out in not so godly ways. They may say or do things they would normally never even think of saying or doing. They may cause harm to themselves or others. They often lash out at the people who love them the most. Some young people become so tired of the pain and confusion they will try anything – even things they know are harmful – in an attempt to get relief.

The good news is you can help your kids process their emotions, while making godly choices. In fact, even toddlers can often put the lid on tantrums by learning these tricks. (Although they may need your help – especially if they are already in the habit of throwing a tantrum.)

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Fun Activity to Teach Perseverance

Fun Activity to Teach Perseverance - Parenting Like HannahPerseverance is a key character trait Christians need. In fact, Romans 5:3-4 tells us, “Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope.” (NIV) It sounds like for your kids to really live out godly character traits in their lives, they need to have first developed perseverance.

It makes sense. It’s hard enough to be honest, for example, consistently. It really takes a lot of perseverance to stay honest when you feel like you are swimming upstream because everyone is mocking you for your honesty. So what can you do to help your kids develop perseverance?

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Should Christian Kids Be Average?

Should Christian Kids Be Average - Parenting Like HannahEducation and psychology love to declare new rules on a regular basis. For a time, self-esteem was king. Your kids were to be told on a daily basis how awesome and special they were. “Losing” became a dirty word. Honor rolls, competitions – even correction and consequences – were rejected as damaging to the fragile self-esteem of children and teens.

Then it came out the entire movement was based on a faulty study, which some claim had been purposely misrepresented. Yet after years of being pushed hard by educators, psychologists, parenting experts and writers, the idea it was important for kids to have a strong self-esteem was firmly entrenched. In reality, the godly attributes of humility, a strong work ethic, persistence, kindness and more were found to be better predictors of future success. (Ironically, new studies found strong self-esteem often led to many negative behaviors!)

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Gaining Christian Parenting Insight

Gaining Christian Parenting Insight - Parenting Like HannahHave you ever met the parents of a child everyone considers an absolute terror? And then listened to them for fifteen minutes as they shared the virtues of their wonderful, free-spirited child? Admit it now. Have you caught yourself thinking something along the lines of, “Are you crazy? Your kid is a terror!”

The truth is, most of the people in the world today are walking around with highly inaccurate perceptions of themselves. A lot of these same people also have inaccurate perceptions of others. So how do you know if maybe you aren’t seeing the world quite accurately? What happens when someone’s perception of your parenting skills or your child’s behavior is radically different from yours? Despite past trends that suggested otherwise, you can’t both be right. There is an objective truth and it will help both you and your kids to figure out what that truth really is and make choices based on it.

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Fun Activity Teaching Kids About Satan’s Tricks

Fun Activity Teaching Kids About Satan's Tricks - Parenting Like HannahTeaching kids about Satan can be a bit tricky. You want your children to be watchful and prepared, but you also don’t want to make them overly fearful. Younger children can usually understand there is a being we can’t see named Satan or the devil. They can begin to grasp that Satan tries to trick them into disobeying their parents and God.

Older elementary aged kids need to begin learning some of the most common tricks Satan uses. The story of Jesus being tempted in the wilderness is a good place to start (Matthew 4:1-11 and Luke 4:1-13). Older readers might also enjoy reading The Screwtape Letters by C.S. Lewis. Begin having talks about how your kids see Satan trying to trick them and their friends using some of those same techniques.

For a fun activity to reinforce how Satan can use people to help trick them, start by reading or telling your (older) kids the story of the Witch of Endor.  (1 Samuel 28:3-25) Explain that the Bible doesn’t make it absolutely clear, but it appears this “witch” had made money tricking people into believing she had access to spirits. Often, people would use the “advice” of the spirits to make their decisions. Using spirits as a guide for making decisions is wrong, because God wants us to have Him guide us.

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Fix these words of mine in your hearts and minds; tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Teach them to your children, talking about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. (Deuteronomy 11:18-19 NIV)