Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Holding their hands, shepherding their hearts

I've been trying to recall to memory a list of the types of communication we can (and should) have with our children. I finally took my lazy buns up to my room to find the book with said list, pulled it from the shelf and read the wise words.

As is always the case when I pick up a book that has shaped me and determine to read it again, I found much more than I bargained for!

Here are some of the yummy bits of goodness, if you'd like to chew on them with me...

From the book, "Shepherding A Child's Heart" by Tedd Tripp.

"'Tell me about your communication with your son,' I queried. [Author is talking with a father]
'Oh we talk okay,' he responded. 'Just last night he told me he wanted a bicycle and I told him to eat his beans.' The comment brought a smile to my face, but as I reflected on it, I realized it was probably an accurate description of communication between most parents and their children. Moms and dads tell the children what to do. Kids tell their parents their wishes and dreams.

We often think of communication as the ability to express ourselves. Accordingly, we think of ourselves as talking to our children. Instead, you should seek to talk with your children. Communication is not monologue. It is dialogue."

"The finest art of communication... is learning how to draw out the thoughts of another."

"If you are going to understand and help your child understand himself, there are skills you must develop. You must learn to help your children to express themselves. You must learn to facilitate conversation. You must know how to comprehend behaviour and words. You must strive to discern matters of the heart.

~ Proverbs 20:5 ~
'The purposes of a man's heart are deep waters, but a man of understanding draws them out.'

As a parent, you want to be such a person of understanding."

"We often reduce parenting to these three elements:

  1. RULES



This is how it works. You give your children the rules. The correction phase comes into play when they break the rules. In the discipline phase you announce the price they will pay for breaking the rules. Every family needs its rules, correction, and discipline, but for many this is the extent of communication..."

"Communication must be multi-faceted and richly textured. It must include:

  1. Encouragement

  2. Correction

  3. Rebuke

  4. Entreaty

  5. Instruction

  6. Warning

  7. Teaching

  8. Prayer"

The author goes on to define and give example for each of these facets of communication, intertwining Scripture as well... too much for me to type out, but so beneficial to read and apply.

This list inspires me. It reminds me of some goals I'd like to pray to the Father for help with.

I aspire to have more balanced and meaningful communication with my daughters, binding their hearts to mine with strings of love.

~christa jean


Youthful One said...

I LOVE that last picture of you and your littlest. It will be such a delight to replicate that shot 16 years from now.

Fantastic post. Great reminders of so many things for me. Particularly to dig back into that great book.

Thanks so much for sharing your inspirations and thoughts.

Kismet said...

Christa, I LOVED this post!!! It was a great reminder of what should be occurring every day....and I needed it.



Kathi said...

You are such a good mommy, Christa Jean. I need to get my book out and dust it off too. I am feeling some tention between my teens and me. God is good and He is faithful to help us with these stresses. Thank you for sharing this post it is very helpful. Hugs, Kathi

DotBlogger said...

Love that book.
Love the message in this post.
Love your heart.