Archive | Dating, Love, and Marriage

Can Looking at Your Childhood Strengthen Your Marriage?

Can Looking at Your Childhood Strengthen Your Marriage? - Parenting Like HannahWant to raise a child to be a strong Christian? Want your kids to stay away from drugs, alcohol and premarital sex? Want them to be emotionally and psychologically healthy? Read any books or articles on those topics and one of the top suggestions is usually for their parents to have a strong, healthy marriage. Just like everything else, it’s no guarantee, but the odds improve greatly for any children raised in a home where their parents have a strong marriage and parent together.

As a result, I am always interested in any new resource designed to strengthen marriages. So, I was naturally curious when offered the chance to review a classic in marriage books, How We Love (Expanded Edition), by Milan and Kay Yerkovich.

Originally published in 2008, this expanded version of the book has some new material and new diagrams. Since this is my first exposure to the book, I can’t really comment on the extra content. The current version honestly has some great things and some aspects that concern me.

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A Great Way to Help Your Child Learn About Love

One Great Way to Help Your Child Learn About Love - Parenting Like HannahWant to help your child have a better dating life? Want to stack the deck so your kids are more likely to want to date godly young men and women? Want to make sure your kids know when the person they are dating is going to make a great Christian spouse? There are no guarantees, but there is one fun thing you and your spouse can do to give your kids a great start on dating, love and marriage.

What is it? From the time your kids can talk, each child should have regular “dates” with the opposite sex parent. Although obviously the dynamic is very different than a “real” date, make sure you do something you both enjoy. Use the time together to demonstrate how to be considerate and thoughtful on a date. As your children get older, start talking about the type of person who makes a great date, a great boyfriend or girlfriend and eventually a great spouse.

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Teaching Christian Kids About Cause and Effect

Teaching Christian Kids About Cause and Effect - Parenting Like HannahWhen you read through secular research on young people and decision making, one thing is mentioned repeatedly. Young people have a tough time making consistently good choices. The causes behind it are many and vary some from child to child. What is problematic for Christian parents is that these bad choices can have not just long term, but eternal consequences.

There is a developmental aspect to making good choices, which is probably why God requires baptism of young people only at the age of accountability. As your kids approach that age, it’s important to really focus on decision making skills – especially in relation to what God wants our decisions to be. You can and probably should, start some early training with even very young children. The earlier you start training them, the easier making good choices will be for most kids.

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Giving Your Kids the Gift of Parents With a Great Marriage

Giving Your Kids the Gift of Parents With a Great Marriage - Parenting Like HannahI do a lot of research as part of my ministry. Studies tracking the causes of problems facing children and teens often list one important factor. The quality of the marriage of the parents has a direct affect on their children. If parents have a healthy marriage, chances are their children are doing well, too.

Which is why I am always searching for resources to help parents improve their marriages. Friends, Partners,  & Lovers: What It Takes to Make Your Marriage Work, by Kevin Thompson is the latest. The title reveals Thompson’s main premise. To have a strong, healthy marriage, the spouses must have a strong friendship, partnership and love life.

Thompson spends time going into thorough detail of what works in each important area of the relationship. His advice is practical and explained in ways that are simple to understand. He manages to hit almost all of the “hot spots” that can throw marriages off track. He even gives plenty of tips for getting back on track in areas that may be weak in the reader’s marriage.

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Great Spiritual Legacy and Encouragement Gift for Your Teen

Great Spiritual Legacy and Encouragement Gift for Your Teen - Parenting Like HannahAs your children enter their teen years, you may begin to feel a sense of urgency in your parenting. You only have a few years remaining when you will see your child daily and have hours a day to help build their spiritual foundation. By your child’s senior year of high school, even the most proactive Christian parent can feel a sense of panic. What have you forgotten to teach? What more do you need to say?

There is a way though to create a special gift that will be a subtle (or not so subtle) reminder for your child of the spiritual truths that were so important to you – the ones you pray are also a part of who they are and who they will become. The great thing is you can put your own special touches on it that will also reflect your love for your child and the value you place on your relationship.

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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)