The soothing tongue is a tree of life. Proverbs 15:4
Is your tongue a tree of life? This means more than just not saying bad things, it means being on the lookout for good things to say. Things that will speak life into your children. Are you on the lookout for opportunities to do that?
I’ve been thinking a lot about habits lately and decided to read the well-known book by Stephen Covey, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People (how is it that I’ve never read it?)
Habit #1 is Be Proactive and if you want to be an effective parent, it is one habit you should adopt.
Covey says that “it means more than merely taking initiative. It means that as human beings, we are responsible for our own lives.” He contends that if we let conditions control us, we are empowering them and thus become reactive people.
Obviously, we cannot control all the conditions that come into our own lives, but we can control how much we let them run our lives.
Are you a parent that always seems to be reacting to things? Do you find yourself on the defensive more than on the offensive?
For instance, you react because your child got into trouble for bullying a child at school, even though you’ve never had a conversation about bullying with your child. Your reaction is to give your child a lecture about why bullying is wrong, but the damage has already been done.
A proactive parenting response would have jumped in front of the problem, knowing that your child has a tendency to be aggressive. You would have had a life-giving conversation with him about treating others with respect.
In other words, don’t wait for the problem to happen to talk about it.
Don’t wait until your child cheats in school to talk about cheating.
Don’t wait until your child experiments with a drug to talk about drugs.
Don’t wait until your daughter dates an abusive boy to talk about unhealthy relationships.
Look for opportunities to have these important conversations with your child. Look head. Be aware. Listen. Know your kids.
Parents get tired and sometimes that means we get lazy in our parenting. But this is an area where laziness can have tragic results.