Having six years of parenting under my belt, I consider myself to be quite the professional (I kid) One of the most important lessons that I have learned in those six years that have flown by at the speed of light is being intentional with your kids. Parenting with a purpose.
Treating each day as a new experience to learn and taking every moment to show them how much you love them. Oh, and there is this little thing called talking.....or communication! You can't get by in life by assuming they will learn life lessons somewhere else. We love our teachers dearly, but they are not raising your kids. YOU are raising your kids. That means you are going to have to be responsible. I know it can be a hard thing to do sometimes, but it's worth it. I want my kids to feel like they can talk to me about anything at any time, and being open, honest and intentional is part of that comfort.
Want your kids not to have sex until marriage? Here's a thought. You talk to them about it. Want them to learn who created the heavens and the earth and is responsible for the awesomeness that we live in? Yup, you're going to have to speak here too. Want them to stop punching Johnny in the face and being disrespectful to adults? Get out of the chair and discipline like you mean it.....with intention and consistency! You want them to date someone who loves the Lord and treats them with respect and yet you say it's "none of your business." Oh...it's your business alright. Parent like you mean it.
It breaks my heart when I get to work at the school and see kids treating each other and teachers with disrespect. It also breaks my heart that they are so needy for attention, just to get anyone to listen to them or to hug them. Every child deserves to be loved. Every child also deserves to be parented and taught and disciplined, but unfortunately it doesn't always work out that way.
I was lucky enough to be raised my some pretty awesome people who made it their job to be the best parents. They didn't always make the grade but I knew that they loved me even when they had to ground me for a month. I seriously think I was grounded for half of my childhood.....just for opening my big mouth. The told me the rules, told me what they expected and helped me realize that it wasn't about ME. They were intentional and purposeful in their parenting. I can't thank them enough.
I don't want anyone to misread what I'm saying or take it the wrong way (I am far from a parenting expert!) I just want to encourage you (whether you're a parent or not) to live your life with intent and purpose. It's not about YOU.