October 16th, 2014
Over the years, our six boys tried basketball, soccer, baseball, and finally football – which is where most of them settled in. Along the way we learned a few things that make a big difference in the experience for your kids and for the whole family.
First, understand sports and competition are not un-Christian! Paul frequently describes the Christian walk as a race – “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race …” and “I do not count my life dear to myself, so that I may finish my race with joy …” (2 Timothy 4:7 and Acts 20:24). Continue reading »
October 3rd, 2014
Here’s what I struggle with: How do I prepare my young boys in case they are exposed to porn without destroying their innocence?
It is a struggle at young ages, but it’s so important. A mom recently told us she discovered her 8 or 9 year old was getting up in the middle of the night to watch porn on her tablet. Another mom said her 7 year old was exposed to porn by a 10 year old neighbor. Yet another collapsed in tears at a conference describing how her 5 year old had been molested by a ten year old neighbor.
How horrifying! Obviously if children this young are being exposed to this stuff, we need to prepare them. How can we do that without taking away their innocence?
Be age appropriate. A young child doesn’t need the full bore explanation an older child does. “We shouldn’t be looking at pictures of people who are naked. We shouldn’t ever take pictures like that, either.”
Use Biblical context. Continue reading »
October 1st, 2014
What can we as parents do to help OUR faith become OUR BOYS’ faith?
As my son goes into the age if double digits, (10 yrs old soon) I worry about him losing his faith. How do I help him look to God more and not less?
These moms are right to be concerned. We read the other day that 42% of people raised in Christian homes who have left the faith first had doubts in middle school. This shouldn’t surprise us because this is a stage that more of us wrestle with spiritual doubt.
Doubts are common in nine to thirteen year olds. It’s a perfect storm. Continue reading »
September 18th, 2014
People often ask us how they can start a family business like we did. The problem is that they need to start a family business like only they can!
One day we were visiting with some dear friends and talking about the need to help families who want the freedom and flexibility both our families had as entrepreneurs. We decided what they need more than anything is mentorship. Continue reading »
September 15th, 2014
We were very surprised to find that many parents who are teaching courtship to their children are expecting (and telling their children!) that there will only be one suitor in their future. We see some real problems with this.
Imagine this: Marc has a female friend he’s known for years. Recently, he’s begun to realize what a good wife she would make and how much he enjoys her friendship. He talks to his parents who agree this looks like a wise course, then he calls her dad and makes an appointment to talk to him. He tells her father how much he appreciates his friend and how he’d like an opportunity to try to win her heart.
“Son, I have the highest respect for you,” the dad replies. “You’re a good man and would make a great husband, but last night, Brent asked me for permission to court my daughter. Now, I don’t want her to be hurt or have any confusion, so I don’t want you to tell her about your interest. I’m sorry.” Continue reading »
September 13th, 2014
Hal often says that boys seem especially tempted by anger, lust, and laziness. And if you think about it, it makes sense–those sins are connected to some of the most important roles men have as protectors, husbands, and providers.
So, how can you overcome their natural laziness? How can you help your son become diligent? Sometimes it seems impossible! Been there, folks. It’s not impossible, though. It just takes awhile. Here are some of the things we’ve done that have helped.
Make it about the mission. Boys often don’t care whether their surroundings are clean or not, so the motivation has to go beyond that. Explain to him how his contribution is helping the family, like this, “Hey son, thanks for rotating the dishwasher. When you handle things like that, it frees me to do other things. I was just on the phone helping a new homeschooling mom. You know, that was partly your ministry, too. You made me able to do it.” Continue reading »
September 4th, 2014
We’ve said some critical things about the way the courtship model is sometimes carried out, but one really good thing that has come out of it is the recognition that courtship and marriage involves more than two people, it involves two families.
We’re always amused when we hear someone say, “I’m marrying her, not her family,” because in our experience, it’s just not true. When you marry someone, their family becomes part of your family, so it pays to start off on the right foot. Continue reading »
August 18th, 2014
“Hey, I’ve got some unexpected time free. Want to meet for coffee?” an adult young man texts an adult female friend.
“I’m not comfortable meeting guys like that. You need to talk to my father,” is the reply.
These two are on a different wavelength. Let’s peek into their heads for a moment. (No, we can’t read their thoughts, but this is what we’ve heard lots of them say privately…
Guy: Hmmmmm. Got an extra hour here. No way to get any work done. Hey, this isn’t far from Charity’s house. Maybe she’d like to meet for coffee or something. She seems like a nice girl, but I really don’t know her. It’d be nice to chat for a bit, see what she’s interested in. She could be a good friend, maybe even someone I can court, but it’s way too early to think about that. “Hey, I’ve got some unexpected time free. Want to meet for coffee?”
Continue reading »
August 15th, 2014
Boys have a love for adventure. The trick is to teach them to take reasonable risks. We want them to be bold and adventurous – without breaking both legs jumping off the roof! There’s a whole chapter about that in Raising Real Men.