An interesting thought or two. Perhaps rambling. Definitely out of no where. Probably a bit boring. Bear with me...
"If you have too many requirements of your children, they will rebel against you" this was said to Brian recently (not in my presence), by an older, wise, Christian gentleman.
Is this true? If you set up too many standards for your children, will they push back and refuse to comply?
Perhaps. But what are you trying to make them comply with? Are they man made standards of preference? Or are they Bible-based directions from the Lord? I suppose one could write a book about this. Actually, there have been thousands of books already written I'm sure. So I'll keep it a short encouragement.
Hopefully, we are striving to instill in our children a strong moral basis. Not endless rules of "no you cannot". But solid moral character, built on Biblical principles. There is always a higher road. Even in grey areas, there is a good, better, best scenario that usually presents itself.
There have been times in my life when I've chosen the "good" path, but not the "best" path. I was not in sin by choosing to do good, but I was aware that I was not doing ALL that I could, by choosing down from the best. The reason I knew the difference between my choices was because of the conviction of the Holy Spirit, and also having a strong moral background. So next time, I make the better choice. And I see deeper, richer rewards.
I think that by striving for the hearts of our children, it will lessen the backlash as they age. I think that by parenting each child in their own way, you will lessen the backlash. I think that building your life up around His Kingdom, and not our own is the kicker. Seeing the world as our temporary home, and striving to live for the eternal one. This looses all the silly man made rules that we are compelled to follow from time to time. But it also institutes "rules" of a higher nature. Ones set by Jesus, and not by man. This takes a great deal of wisdom. Which is why parenting is so hard. God grant wisdom to those that seek it.
I do not believe the hype - that rebellion is the way of life of for teens. I have seen firsthand how this does not have to be the truth. I believe it should be the exception for children, rather than the rule. It should be. The reason it isn't likely has much more to do with the parents than the kids.
So back to the statement:
"If you have too many requirements of your children, they will rebel against you"
To which Brian replied, "That's fine. They can rebel if they choose, I cannot control that. But they will be rebelling against God, not me".
I liked that answer, because there is so much freedom in it. I will not require anything more of my children than what their heavenly Father requires of all men. But that is actually kind of a tall order. By making wise choices all the way along, I hope that they are so in love with the Lord, that they walk humbly before Him, always, in wisdom.
Micah 6:8 "...and what does the Lord require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?"