Monday, January 6, 2014

New Year's Resolution #3: Love my kids

-Love the kids: Specific ways I’m going to do that include:

1) Share the gospel with them, pray with them. Our Jesse Tree devotions went well this year, so I want to keep it up by having. Bible study time after dinner, at the table. We're planning on using this list to start.
Honestly, it's my husband who heads this up, but I can help by making sure dinner is early enough that we have time for this afterwards. I love listening to him and the kids discuss the stories while I do dishes (and occasionally chime in).

2) Pray for them.  I want to spend some time writing down where each kid is at, how I can pray for him and her, what she or he needs . . . partly for memories, partly to just make sure I pay attention and am deliberate in my mothering. My mom did this for us, twice a year. I think if I do it for one kid each month, that’d be good. So I’d do it for each three times this year. I like this idea.

3) Read to them. I’ve been doing better on this this year, and I want to keep going!

4) Listen to them. Each day, I want to spend deliberate face-to-face questioning/listening time with each kid, even if it’s just 5 minutes. I spend so much time with them, but there's a difference between the all-of-us-in-a-group time (which is pretty much all day) and one-on-one time.

I often do this with the after-school “tell me one good thing and one bad thing about your day” and it works really well. Sometimes there’s nothing big, but it makes SPACE for something big, if they need my attention, advice, or help. It holds the ground open between us. I want to keep doing this – it’s been good, and I think it’ll be more and more important the older they get.

This is one of those things that sounds so simple, but it's easy to forget if I'm not deliberate about it. And it is so worth being deliberate about this one.

What about you?
Talk about your parenting goals in the comments, or link to your post about your goals. I’ll add any links to the body of this post, so they’re easier for others to see and visit. (And if you’re not a parent, please share your goals for loving those in your household or church or family or wherever your closest community is found.)

Mary emailed me with her (awesome) advice, saying:

How can we show love to our friends and our church? Just SHUT UP and listen to them instead of doing all the talking! (They all seem to love that).
Wise woman. :)

Peace of Christ to you,
Jessica Snell

1 comment:

jen said...

I've heard of doing "high-lows" (what you're doing when you ask your kids for one bad thing and one good thing), doing the 3 J's (your junk, your joy, and your Jesus moment), and a modified examen (something you're thankful for, something you wish you hadn't done, and somewhere you saw God's work during the day.