"What are your family and friends constantly asking you about? Start blogging about that. Chances are good that if they want to know, your readers will, too. And if you're being asked about it, you probably have something worth sharing."
The above advice was part of a blogging class I'm currently taking. I thought it was fabulous advice...until I started thinking about what it is people ask me.
"What do you do when your toddler throws a tantrum?"
"How do you stop being an angry mom?"
"Your kids are so well-behaved; how do you do it?"
"Do you have any tips for potty training?"
I get these and other questions frequently. Maybe it's because I have a lot of children. Maybe I just look like someone who would know the answers. Whatever the reason, people often ask me for parenting advice. And that's the problem: for a number of reasons, I don't actually enjoy giving parenting advice.
- First, I don't feel exceptionally qualified to give it. I haven't found any magical formula for child-rearing that I'm dying to share with the world. I'm just a struggling mama like everyone else around me.
- Second, I'm not sure people really want to hear what I have to say about parenting. I parent from a Biblical perspective, and unless those asking are of the same faith as I am, my methods will probably come across sounding old-fashioned.
- Third, my oldest is 11. I haven't even hit the teenage years yet. I know nothing of the growing independence and mood swings commonly attributed to the adolescent years (although I'm actually looking forward to having teenagers in the house!).
- Fourth, none of my spark plugs currently has any learning disabilities, mental health hindrances, or behavioral issues. In other words, I don't have a lot of wide-range parenting tenure.
What if this is the Lord prompting me to share what little I do know? What if, in being willing to share my thoughts about Biblical parenting, I can help even one struggling mother? What if my words can help stop even one parenting battle from taking place? Wouldn't it be worth it?
Yes, it would.
And so, with that single thought in mind, I'm stepping out in faith to put together a small series on Biblical parenting in the hopes that it will encourage just one mama in her parenting efforts. Maybe that mama is you.
For the next few weeks, I'll be sharing about what Biblical parenting is, why it's as important to Christian families today as it was when the Bible was written several thousand years ago, and how we can implement it in our households.
Before I wrap up this introductory post, though, there are a few things I'd like to share with you. The first is about my kids being well-behaved. This, on the days when it's actually true (we have bad days just like everyone else!), is due solely to God's grace. I have no parenting wisdom apart from what the Bible teaches and the Holy Spirit gives. I can't emphasize this point enough.
The second, on a lighter note, is that I won't be sharing any potty-training tips for now, no matter how many mamas ask me for advice on this topic! That's an area utterly beyond my scope of knowledge. I don't even know how my older three got trained. I'm still struggling with training my youngest. If any of you have suggestions, I'd welcome them!
With that off of my chest, let's study the what, how, and why of Biblical parenting together.
Your turn: What are your biggest parenting struggles? What aspect of motherhood makes you often think, "I wish there were a manual on this topic"? Share in the comments or contact me. I probably won't have the answer, but I'd love to pray along with you as you seek the Lord in this matter! And if you're past the child-rearing years, what advice would you give those of us who are still in the trenches?