It’s not always necessary to express your opinion as a parent. Sometimes you should ask your kids questions because they are a better answer to the problem.
A fool takes no pleasure in understanding, but only in expressing his opinion. Proverbs 18:2
Are you predominantly an asker or a teller?
As parents, it’s very easy to fall into the habit of always being tellers.
Pick up your toys!
Eat your vegetables!
Do your homework!
Go take a bath!
Give Gramma a hug!
And that’s because when our kids are small, before they can even speak, that’s all they understand. If we were to ask questions, they would not get it.
But as your kids get older, I’d like to challenge you to look for opportunities to ask more questions. I don’t think we can ever stop telling because as parents, that’s just part of our job. But what about sprinkling in some questions with your telling? Or there may even be some conversations with your child when you can drop the telling and just ask, because there are times when kids need your questions more than they need your answers.
Why do they need your questions?
Because questions will make your child learn to think for himself. Questions will force your child to figure out the answers to some of his problems.
It’s way too easy for parents to fall into the trap of always having a solution to our kids’ problems. I’ve been guilty of this way too much. It’s a parental instinct to want to “fix” our kids and that is usually not the best thing for them.
As hard as it is to watch, sometimes they just have to figure out the answer on their own.
This is something you can begin teaching your children when they are young with simple questions. Try it out next time your child comes with a dilemma and wants your magical answer to solve the problem. Ask a couple of questions to help him think it through himself.
Telling is a hard habit to break, but with some persistent practice, you can discover the joy of questioning!
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Not to mention wondering if you are doing the right things to help your children grow up to love and honor God?
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