When 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.
Continue reading Teaching Christian Kids About Cause and Effect
Lies are often like potato chips. It’s hard to tell just one. Children often think telling “one little lie” will keep them from getting in trouble and receiving consequences. What they don’t realize is that it is very difficult to cover up something that happened with just one lie. Often, the first lie leads to many others being told to back up the original deception.
There is a fun activity you can do to help your kids realize how difficult it is to tell “just one lie”. Start by telling your kids the story of Jacob tricking Isaac found in Genesis 27. Ask your kids how many lies and “tricks” Jacob had to tell/do to get Esau’s blessing for himself. Ask them why Jacob couldn’t get the blessing from Isaac just by telling the one lie that he was Esau.
Continue reading Fun Activity to Teach Kids About Lies
Growing 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.)
Continue reading 4 Tips for Helping Kids Deal With Emotions in Godly Ways