My friend Katie shared this article with me. It is simple but still good. It might not seem like a big deal at first. But these discussions about how to do something simple, like talk with your kids, are important because it is easy to try, and fail. Try again, fail again. And then give up. Sometimes perseverance combined with a little wisdom can win the day.
Mark it down, having lots of conversations with your kids should be at the very top of your priority list. This might be the key (in broad terms) to raising your kids. It is not a silver bullet, but it is probably the next best thing. Talk to them about everything. Mingle it with love, grace and truth. Sadly, most of us are looking for something more expensive, and more exotic, more worthy of social media. But the best things in life often seem ordinary. Your kids don’t need more activities, and more technology. They need more time with you. The Bible is clear on this in Deuteronomy 6:4-9, which basically says we are to be talking with our kids all the time (and especially talking to them about God).
Sadly, many of us give people in lab coats more weight than scripture. But in this regard, they have come to similar conclusions. Talking with your children is good for them (and for you!). It will help them build relationships, grow in emotional intelligence (and this article too), develop language skills, improve school performance, etc.
By the way, you need to build a conversational relationship with your kids before major problems enter your household, and they will. This means you need to do this before the teen years arrive. And you need to maintain this relationship during the teen years. If you regularly talk to your kids– all the time– then when they fail a test, get in a fight, crash the car, try out drugs, look at porn, (and fill in whatever other parenting nightmares you have) then you already have a well worn pathway to help shepherd them through the problems they are facing.
And yet…. talking with our children can be hard work. It can be draining to push for a conversation when they don’t want to talk.
Well, don’t give up… Try some of these. It is a silly list, but fun. There is much more to be said.
This one was one of my favorites:
“8. Which one of your teachers would survive a zombie apocalypse? Why?”