“Indeed I have taken much trouble to prepare for the house of the Lord one hundred thousand talents of gold and one million talents of silver, and bronze and iron beyond measure, for it is so abundant.” — The words of King David speaking to his son Solomon in I Chronicles 22:14
- To love God with all their heart
- To respect and serve others
- To find their passion and pursue it
That’s it. If those three realities emerge at some point in their development, I’ll be the happiest parent around.
Those are real broad, big-picture type goals. How to specifically teach and impart these goals by taking advantage of what life brings our way is another story altogether. I continually wrestle with how I can best move each of my children forward in these areas. I know this one thing for sure though – none of it will happen unless I’m involved in their lives.
I cannot assume they will get there on their own, without direction from me. I’ve got to be present every day – modeling, teaching, correcting, encouraging and guiding them. (And having a TON of patience.) I can help set them up for success but only if I’m an engaged parent, who maximizes their strengths, confronts their weaknesses and meets their needs.
Parenting is a hands-on affair.
One of the greatest leaders of ancient times, King David, had serious parenting issues. The Bible gives us clues that his parenting approach was to be entirely hands-off when it came to his children. (He definitely didn’t confront their poor behavior.) It got so bad, that at one point he lost his great courage and fled for his life because he had allowed his son Absalom to usurp his kingly authority in an attempt to take over the kingdom. He definitely would not have won any “Parent-of-the-Year” awards.
But David did know how to plan. So when God revealed to him that another son Solomon would build a magnificent temple, David put a program in motion that would set Solomon up for success. He accumulated and stored massive amounts of gold, silver, bronze, and iron for the temple construction. He had timber and stone cut by master craftsmen and he hired all kinds of skillful men for every type of work the temple construction would require. And in a final moment of parental inspiration, he challenged his son to “Arise and begin working,” for God would be with him. (I Chronicles 22:14-16)
David wasn’t making it easy for Solomon. There was still a great deal of work to be done and Solomon would have to oversee the entire project. But this must have been encouraging and instilled a great deal of confidence in Solomon for him to see all that his father had done for him. At the least, I’m sure it showed Solomon how much his father loved him.
Don’t misunderstand, I’m not going out of control crazy here trying to manipulate my children’s future. Ultimately, it will be their responsibility as to whether they succeed or not. Their life will have to stand on its own merits through their own efforts. But if I can support them by giving them a positive head start and paving a little bit of the road ahead, then I’m all about that.
Are you parenting with the future in mind? How are you actively trying to set your kids up for future success? What’s the most important thing you are teaching your child right now? How are you doing it?
Next Post: 10 Reasons People Don’t Tweet Your Post
Prior Post: Is the Effort to Get Rich Worth It?