July 24, 2017

Parenting the Strengths of Your Child

Written by Boyd Bailey

Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – July 24, 2017

Train up a child in the way he should go [teaching him to seek God’s wisdom and will for his abilities and talents], Even when he is old he will not depart from it. Proverbs 22:6, The Amplified Bible

Children are blessed with unsoiled and underdeveloped talents and gifts given to them by their heavenly Father. Some are scary gifted in their ability to speak clearly and accurately as a preschooler. Phrases like “trains coupled together” and “owls are nocturnal” are impressive. Or a  child may be a good organizer, a dependable helper with chores, creative in their drawing and writing, patient in waiting on others, and generous in sharing their stuff. Wise parents support and develop the skills and giftedness of their children to grow their confidence and to serve others.

Proverbs teaches us that our child has a bent for becoming someone with unique abilities and talents that can be unlocked with patient parental guidance. To train a child is so much more than to tell a child—train means to show, interact and explain. Start early by observing what interests them: reading—tell stories and read together, building—assemble legos and solve puzzles together, exploring—look for adventure in the outdoors and expand their imagination indoors. Most of all, seek God’s wisdom together in shaping their worldview from His Word—the Bible.

“How from childhood you have known the sacred writings (Hebrew Scriptures) which are able to give you the wisdom that leads to salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus [surrendering your entire self to Him and having absolute confidence in His wisdom, power, and goodness].” (2 Timothy 3:15, AMP).

Consider the same amount of energy exerted in angry correction, “I’ve told you to do this three times, now do it!” Instead, channel that focused attention into using their strengths to solve a problem, “You are such a good organizer, what if you packed your backpack the night before and placed it by the door?” Or, reinforce a strength that can preclude a problem,“You were such a big help when you shared with your brother/sister, did you see how much they enjoyed your       ?” Strengths are meant to compensate, even overcome weaknesses, so when we manage strengths well, we unlock a whale of potential! What strengths do you see in your child that you can praise?

Exactly, what does it mean to train and instruct our child in the Lord? It begins with a healthy fear of the Lord. Not fear as in afraid, but fear as in respect. We obey God because He is our holy heavenly Father who desires and deserves our instant obedience. Simultaneously, we talk a lot about the Lord’s love in giving His only son, Jesus, for the forgiveness of our sins, and for the gift of the Holy Spirit who empowers us to live our life for Him. Lessons learned about God’s gifts of grace, faith, humility, forgiveness, gratitude, generosity, and kindness strengthen our child’s character to engage our culture for Christ. Assuredly, an adult who loves God was trained well!

“You shall teach them diligently to your children [impressing God’s precepts on their minds and penetrating their hearts with His truths] and shall speak of them when you sit in your house and when you walk on the road and when you lie down and when you get up” (Deuteronomy 6:7, AMP).



Heavenly Father, give me patient love to train my children in Your love.


What strengths of my child can I help reinforce and develop?

Related Reading

Proverbs 3:13; Lamentations 3:22-23; Ephesians 6:4; Philippians 4:6  

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