Summary: An overview of training your child based upon who they are to learn to walk with God.
Unlocking your child’s potential
As you turn to this verse, let’s review some truths about proverbs. A proverb is not a given promise. It is an instruction of Godly wisdom. It is a principle that when generally applied brings about general results. It is often made up of 3 basic parts: instruction, wisdom, result(a warning or positive result).
Here are the 3 basic parts of this verse:
Quote from Chuck Swindoll’s book You and Your Child . excellent book and best interpretation of this verse:
“Adapt the training of your child so that it is in keeping with his God-given characteristics and tendencies; when he comes to maturity, he will not depart from the training he has received.”
I.What is your child’s way?
Let’s begin with the way first. It will help us understand better the training command. The word “way” can also be interpreted as “bent.” The idea is this –how has God uniquely wired your child?
Always begin with your child’s uniqueness. That is where his or her potential lies. Let me give you a new definition of potential:
The fullness of God’s design based upon the “one of a kind” tapestry of traits and talents woven together specifically to accomplish the plan He designed for their life.
Every child is a unique person and full of God-given potential for a specific plan He has created for them. Remember that your role as a parent is to raise that child to walk with God. He wants to save them to walk in a path He designed just for them. No one can be a better Greg than me. I will reach my fullest expression of who I was meant to be when I walk with Jesus and land in that path He made me for before I was formed by Him in my mother’s womb.
There are certain components to every person that are woven into a beautiful tapestry. They can be identified using certain methods. You need to be aware of these and use them to learn and understand your unique and wonderful child.
I am going to identify these for you, but do not have time to go into detail on in any particular one. They are all found in most of the literature I have recommended to you. This is simply intended to give you an overview of training.
Method 1: personality traits
Learning styles: auditory
* love language (communication style)
These form the essence of his or her personality.
Training requires you to use 4 basic functions in interacting with your child as you train. All of these methods of understanding your child will be useful in many areas, but especially in these 4 basic functions because you repeat them every day in their training process.
Use their uniqueness in:
One child in my house – sanguine. Had to learn how to get his attention. Needed to understand this personality type.
One child in my house – a visual learner, not auditory. So learn a different communication style.
My personality is passionate. My parents at times were good about focusing that passion; at times they were not. I’m very relational as well. For example, I was interested in becoming a lawyer. My dad, when I was 16, started having lawyer friends take me out to lunch, tour their offices, etc. Because I am relational in my approach to life, this was very effective in motivation me in school, helping me seek God’s direction, creating a framework for discussion w/ Dad as he guided me, etc.
Use their aptitudes and learning styles to train them. Example: auditory learner, music aptitude? Then get them involved in music ministry. Focus on band, etc. My brother – an area of aptitude for him and they used to develop self-confidence and growth. My folks are not particularly musical but recognized a heritage of that in our family tree and so investigated that in us and used it to great effect for him.
Janet(wife) was adopted. Only information they had was the teenage birth mother had an aptitude in music. Her parents used that in her life to great effect as well.
Be careful to find true aptitudes though. For example, do you have an athletic child? Really or is that your desire?
Major problem today: You rush around having your child do everything. Terrible!!!! How can you utilize areas of aptitude if you do everything and just drive around in the car all day? You need to learn to focus on what they do and who they are. Make sure it is them and not what you want them to be for you.