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Even though most Christian parents  would agree that teaching the Bible to our children is one of  the most important things we can do, we often fail to do it!

There are 5 common reasons WHY we neglect teaching the Bible to our children:

1. THERE’S NOT ENOUGH TIME.

The truth is that we make time to do the things we want to do. We only have one chance to raise our kids, and if we don’t have time to obey God’s command in Deuteronomy 6 to teach His Word to our children, we’re too busy.

Sometimes I think we don’t really believe it’s all that important. Actions show how you really feel about things, and what you value.

If you tell your kids constantly how important the Bible is, but don’t show it by your actions, they won’t value it either.

When was the last time that your children saw you reading the Bible, or that you shared something God showed you from His Word?

2. IT DOESN’T SEEM TO DO ANY GOOD.

Perhaps you get discouraged and think what you’re doing isn’t helping at all. Think again!

First, God’s Word won’t return unto Him void.

Second, recognize where those thoughts are coming from. The devil knows what God’s Word will do in your family’s life, and of course, will try to stop you.

We can’t let this lie  cause us to neglect teaching the Bible to our children!  Keep on, remembering the power of His Word.

3. THE KIDS ARE NOT INTERESTED IN MEMORIZING VERSES, OR READING GOD’S WORD.

This probably stems from one of two things.

First, their minds are too cluttered with other things. For example, too much TV or an excessive interest in sports, video games, music, etc.

Second, perhaps your attitude is influencing them.  Are YOU showing excitement?

WHY YOU NEED TO BE INTENTIONAL ABOUT TEACHING SCRIPTURE MEMORIZATION EARLY

4. WE DON’T REALLY BELIEVE IT’S ALL THAT IMPORTANT.

Actions show how you really feel about things, and what you value.

If you tell your kids constantly how important the Bible is, but don’t show it by your actions, they won’t value it either. When was the last time that your children saw you reading the Bible, or that you shared something God showed you from His Word?

HOW TO BUILD YOUR FAMILY ON THE WORD OF GOD

5. WE DON’T REALIZE THE BLESSING WE WILL RECEIVE AS WE MAKE THE BIBLE OUR TOP PRIORITY.

We have seen many blessings in our family and home, as we have tried to make God’s Word of top importance.

Let me share some of those blessings:

  •  My kids are excited about the Bible!

They read one or more chapters a day, memorize passages, and we review them. They often do the memory work on their own, as they’re anxious to get the new passage learned. I don’t have to drive them with a whip to do any of these things.

  •  The kids are more responsive to the Holy Spirit, as God’s Word keeps their hearts soft.

One night I was concerned about the attitude my daughter had shown through the day and into the evening. It was something I sensed, but wasn’t quite sure how to deal with. I prayed about it specifically as I took my shower. When I was done, she called  me into her and she apologized for having a bad attitude! As she was praying, the Lord spoke to her about it and she responded.

  •  God’s thoughts become part of their thoughts 

One night at dinner, the word refuge was mentioned. Immediately my eight year old son quoted, “The Lord God also will be a refuge for the oppressed.” My ten year old said the next phrase, and my five year old the next verse. Wow! How exciting that God’s Word was right there in their thoughts.

  •  Perhaps the biggest blessing in all this, is that I get excited and I learn God’s Word as I help the kids memorize & apply it, as I discipline them with Scripture, and teach with it.

As I daily work to teach the Bible to my kids, I get constant exposure to God’s thoughts. I’m not sure who God really meant to benefit the most from His command in Deuteronomy 6, but I’m sure He knew that parents needed this as  much (perhaps more) as the kids!

It’s always exciting to obey God’s commands and then see how He blesses!

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The post Why We Neglect Teaching the Bible To Our Children appeared first on The Character Corner.

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In the post Are You Making These 5 Parenting Mistakes? I shared some mistakes that I have made in my parenting which are very common.  This week God impressed some thoughts on my mind that relate to parenting mistakes that we make when we have a prodigal child.

I think there can be a wide range of behavior that describes a prodigal child.  Some may be showing some beginning signs of rebellion, where others may be living in outright rebellion to what they have been taught from God’s Word.

I’ve been guilty of many mistakes at different times when one of my kids was at any stage that caused me to be concerned that they were going in the wrong direction, or heading towards becoming a prodigal.

Here are three mistakes when parenting a prodigal:

1.  Fretting

As parents who spend time investing in the training of their children, we long for God’s blessing on their lives.  When we see them making choices that we know can bring unpleasant consequences, it is EASY to begin to worry.

If we aren’t careful, we can become consumed with that worry.  God doesn’t want us to carry that burden, but rather give it to Him.

There have been MANY times over the last 34 years of raising our eight kids, that I would lay in bed FRETTING.  Again, it may not have even been a BIG, major issue.  However, I knew there was a heart problem that could lead to those major issues, and I had trouble letting go.

I had to intentionally picture handing the situation to God, and letting go.  Often, I  realized I was holding it AGAIN, and would repeat the process of saying “God, I know you are in control, and You have told us to cast our cares on You. I give You this burden, and ask You to carry it for me.”

Remember that fretting and worrying accomplishes NOTHING, other than stressing you and wasting precious energy!

2.  Talking to others about it, rather than praying.

Recently I had a conversation with one of my kids that immediately caused me to be concerned about the way they were thinking, and where it would/could lead.  I tried to communicate my concerns, but didn’t feel that I got too far with that.  I walked away from the conversation wondering WHY so many our our “good Christian kids” are struggling so much with the issues they are.

My wondering then led me to think that I really wanted to talk to a certain person and get their perspective and opinion about it.

Immediately, God convicted me about the fact that I was so eager to run and seek the opinion and advice of someone, when I had not even brought it to HIM!! (By the way, I think it is WISE to seek advice and counsel about your kids if they are struggling, but be sure to seek God FIRST.)

How VERY often have I been guilty of that!  It’s so easy to talk about the problem and your concern to everyone except the ONE who has ALL the answers we need, AND is able to work in the heart of our kids and bring conviction that WE can’t bring. If He can change the heart of a king, He can change the heart of our child.

I share some thoughts to pray for your wayward child in the post 5 Things to Pray for the Prodigal.

3.  Taking it personally, rather than realizing that it is a spiritual battle.

It is SO easy to get caught up in the conflicts we have with our young people that we begin to allow it to become a personal thing — us against them.  We allow the conflict to damage the relationship, which is EXACTLY what the devil is hoping to do!  One of his biggest tricks is to get us fighting against each other, when we are on the SAME side, and should be fighting TOGETHER against him, not each other!

Whenever you are having rebellion problems with any of your kids, immediately recognize it as spiritual warfare, and put on the armor of God.  Seek HIS strength, power, and wisdom as you partner with God to love your child and not fight against him, but FOR him. The best thing you can do is seek to restore the relationship with your child and win their heart back.

Having a wayward child is a difficult thing to deal with, but God will give you the grace and strength you need.  He invites you to come to Him for wisdom, and to cast your cares on Him.  Don’t carry the burden alone, but take it to Him!

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As I finished my 31st and final year of homeschooling, I was thinking back over the years, and the things my husband and I had learned as well as the the changes we had made. It’s a journey I would do all over again, but there are a few things I would change if I had it to do over. After 31 years of homeschooling – if I had it to do over again, what changes would I make?

Homeschooling- If I Had It To Do Over – 3 things that I would do differently:

1. I would take better care of myself.

As a young mom, I was able to get away with staying up late, getting up during the night with babies, and getting up early with the toddlers. I was tired, as all busy moms are, but I was able to do what I needed to each day. I didn’t exercise regularly, because I didn’t feel I had the time. There were always better or more important things to do. Eventually, it all began to catch up with me though.

I hit a spot where I started to struggle physically, and ended up with chronic fatigue, and stressed adrenals. I was burned out – physically, emotionally, and mentally. At that point I realized that I HAD to take time for self-renewal. I needed to adjust things so I could get the rest I needed.

This required making some changes in our activities, and I had to pretty much stop all outside activities. I also started to take a break now and then with some friends. It’s amazing what a little time away, laughing with some like-minded moms, will do for you! Laughter is a good medicine.

As I took those steps, it helped me improve mentally, and have clearer, more focused thinking, and well as more positive thoughts.

Fatigue will always lead to negative thoughts, such as: “I’m not doing a good job – my kids would be better off in school”, I’m such a bad Mom – I never have energy to play with the kids”, “I can’t handle this anymore”, etc. Everything seems worse when you are fatigued.

If I am burned out and can’t function, I will lose my ability to do what God has called me to do. I wish I hadn’t had to learn that the hard way!

2. I would stress much less about WHEN a child “got” it with reading, or math.

I would focus on making learning fun, and waiting till they were ready. For each child that readiness comes at different ages. They also learn in different ways. If I had known that when I first started teaching the kids, it would have saved me many hours of tears and frustration. (mine and the kids!)

I want my kids to enjoy learning, but if I keep pushing them when they aren’t ready and don’t get it, they will dislike learning. Also, if I use a curriculum that doesn’t work with their learning style, it will be much more frustrating for both of us.

Over time I realized that it doesn’t hurt to take a break from from the phonics, or new math concept if they just aren’t quite ready for it yet. It’s better to put it aside for a time, do some learning games that aren’t intense, and then try the subject again a few weeks later.

3. I would focus less on making sure the rules were being obeyed, and more on building the relationship that would make them WANT to obey those rules!

Rules are necessary, but as the saying goes, “Rules without relationship breed rebellion.”

It is easy to strive for compliance while forgetting the relationship that will bring that compliance.

Because of our strong desire to be good parents,  in an attempt to be firm we were often too harsh.  The relationship with our kids was damaged as a result of the harshness.

We learned that it worked much better when we appealed to our children on the basis of love, rather than intimidation.

A similar error was that we tried to protect them from wrong — wrong activities, wrong influences, wrong friendships — while failing to befriend them the way we should ourselves.

In order to develop a relationship that would bring compliance, we needed to spend time with them. We needed to be available when they wanted to talk, and we needed to show an interest in what was important to them.

We needed to accept them for who they were, and let them know we loved them. That in turn leads to winning their hearts, which brings the desire for them to please us.

We learned that it is better to work hard at keeping their hearts, than having to try to repair damage and win their heart back. (By the way, I believe that keeping our children’s hearts is the most important thing we can do as parents!)

There are many other things my husband and I have learned along the way, but these three stand out above the rest. I hope they will be a help to you on your homeschooling journey!

Subscriber Freebie: Printable of 20 Ways To Win Your Child’s Heart

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As busy moms, finding time with God can be challenging.   In our hearts we long to make time to spend reading His Word and praying, but often the reality is that parenting young children and taking care of our marriages and our homes, seems to pretty much fill up our day.

It’s easy to push our spiritual life to the bottom of the priority list when our daily t0-do’s seem out of control.

As a result, we are even more stressed because we are trying to do things in our own strength, and aren’t taking time to seek His wisdom in our daily priorities.

Most of us are busy, and when life is jam-packed in the season of parenthood, it’s hard to know how to fit in time with God. But we CAN do it, and we NEED to do it!

Spending time with God probably won’t look the same as it did before you had children, so it’s important to recognize that, and be realistic in your expectations.

Realistically, you probably won’t have 30 minutes of uninterrupted time to spend in the Word, and more than likely your “quiet time” won’t be real quiet!  

But that’s okay!  With a little creativity you can make it work in the midst of your busy family life.

Here is a busy mom’s guide to finding time with God in a variety of creative ways:

1. Listen to a Bible app while getting ready for the day.

This is great for those days that are busy, and you have to get ready and run out the door.  You can also listen to your Bible app while driving so you start your day with God’s Word.

2. Pray while you are in the shower.

Shower time often was my ONLY alone time as a busy mom!  Take advantage of that time and commit your day to God, while also seeking His strength, wisdom, and direction for the day.

Be sure to  praise Him during this time–nothing starts your day off better than a few minutes of praising God!

3.  Sing a Scripture song with the kids before eating breakfast.

This is a great way to  help you and your kids memorize God’s Word easily, and keep it in your mind then throughout the day.  It will help your kids and YOU to have a better attitude as the Scripture song goes as you go about your daily activities.

4.  Have a family Bible time after breakfast.

This doesn’t have to be long or complicated.  Depending on the ages of your kids, it can be a short Bible story that you read and then talk about, or you can read a few verses from Proverbs and how to apply it to daily life.  Keep it short and help them learn something from it.

Don’t believe that your kids will be BORED by the Bible.  If you are excited about reading it, and get excited about what God is teaching you, your kids will pick up on that excitement.

Pray together afterwards asking God to help you to apply what you have learned, bless your day, etc.

5. Memorize Scripture with your kids.

Memorizing Scripture is the BEST way to keep God’s Word in your heart and mind even on the busiest of days.  Kids have sharp little memories and are capable of memorizing more than you might think.  We had our kids memorize passages, and they did great.

We started with short passages like:

  • John 14:1-6
  • Psalm 1
  • Psalm 23
  • Psalm 100

From there we moved on to some longer passages such as the Beatitudes, and I Corinthians 13.

The key to this is making it FUN with motions, lots of expression, pictures, etc.

(Scroll to the bottom to get our FREE ABC Bible Memory Verses Cards!)

6.  Give your younger children a DVD with Bible stories to watch while you read your Bible and pray. Have the readers sit beside you and read their Bible (give them a plan) while you read yours.

This is teaching your kids that you value this time with God.  They see that this is important to you — important enough that you make it part of your daily routine.

Another benefit is that it  will help your kids to develop the habit of spending time with God daily.

Encourage your readers to have a daily Bible reading time using one of the Bible reading planning your kids will enjoy. 

7.  Listen to good, uplifting music during the day.  

Having hymns and Godly music playing does so much for your spirit, and will help you feel closer to God.

I also use a phone app called Abiding Radio.  It has options for good Christian music, including kids songs.  I usually choose the instrumental hymns, as it can be playing in the background, but isn’t too distracting.

8.  Use Scripture for correction throughout the day.

Not only does this help you to focus on the child’s heart issue (rather than the wrong behavior), but it also gets God’s Word into your heart and mind.

If you happen to have been blessed with a difficult child, think how many times a day you will be able to get God’s Word in your mind daily!

Finding time with God is much harder once you become a mom, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t possible!  Adjust your expectations, be creative, and then commit to it.  Whether it’s reading the Bible to your kids, singing it, memorizing it, or listening to your Bible app, make finding time with God a daily priority!

Get started on Scripture memory with these FREE ABC BIBLE MEMORY VERSE CARDS!

The post Busy Mom’s Guide to Finding Time With God appeared first on The Character Corner.

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What are some things our kids REALLY need?

As parents we want to do all we can to provide for our children and give them what they need, but often we fall into the trap of thinking that our kids needs lots of THINGS.

Your kids don’t even really need all the THINGS their friends may have, or all the newest game systems or toys that come out.  Don’t  get caught up in materialism, and giving your kids lots of STUFF. (more than they even need)

I’m not saying it’s wrong to get things for your kids.

As parents, we love to show our love to our children by giving gifts, or splurging on the newest popular item that has come out.

What IS wrong though, is thinking that if we provide all those things we are doing good, and our kids have what they need.

The truth is that  some of the most important  things our kids REALLY do need,  can’t be bought.

Here are 10 things  our kids REALLY need:

1.  Our unconditional love

They need to know beyond a doubt that we will always love them, and nothing they can do will ever change that. Think of the security this gives our kids! That security will mean more to your kids than anything you can ever buy for them.

2.  Our acceptance.

Do your kids feel that you accept them for who they are, or do they feel they need to change and measure up for you to accept them? It’s important that they feel accepted and loved for who they are.

When was the last time that you told that something you loved about them, or what they did that you thought was great?  They need to hear those things from us, an be confident of our acceptance of them for who they are.

3.  Our affirmation and our praise.

The best way to encourage  positive behavior in our kids is by giving lots of sincere praise.  Our kids need to know that we not only love them, but we also LIKE them.

Giving lots of affirmation confirms to them that they are special to you, and loved.

As parents, the words you use in your child’s life have the power either to bless or curse. Praying Biblical blessings for your children is an effective way to bring God’s blessings into their lives, and see His power work in their hearts.

Join our free 10 day challenge:  Praying Biblical Blessings For Your Children, and get started on speaking life into your children. 

4.  Boundaries and rules that are enforced.

Even though kids may complain about the rules, if you have a good relationship with them and have their heart, they will trust you and know those rules are for their good.

Kids feel more secure and loved, when there are rules and boundaries in their home. Rules aren’t the problem, but rules with no relationship creates a problem and pushes your kids away.  

Remember, it’s rules without relationship that lead to rebellion.

5.  Training and discipline.

It is a Scriptural command that we bring our kids up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.  It is our job to train and discipline them with love, while pointing them to God’s Word and what He says is right and wrong.

Biblical parenting focuses on the heart, not the behavior, and that’s why we need to use God’s Word for training and correction.

6.  A knowledge of God and His Word.

As Christian parents, the most important thing we can do is build faith in our kids.  This comes as we teach them God’s Word regularly, and talk about it through out the day, relating it to all our activities and studies.   This should be the foundation that all of our teaching and training rests on.

7.  Character training.

The best way to prepare a child for life is to teach, model, and promote the development of Godly character.

If a child is taught nothing else but character alone, he will be better prepared for life than those who are taught pure academics but no character.

8.  Opportunities to fail.

Let your kids try new things, and don’t protect them from making mistakes.  Some of the best lessons learned come from our mistakes.

9. Our time.

The BEST gift you can give your kids, is the gift of your time.

Being present and available to listen says to your children: “I love you, and you are important!”

10. A happy and peaceful home.

Kids need a safe place where they feel the love, and where they can enjoy being with those they love.

We should work hard to keep our homes a place where our kids enjoy spending time.  Make sure your home has a peaceful atmosphere and is  filled with love and laughter.

What things would you add to this list?

Grab a free printable copy of 30  words of affirmation every child needs to hear!

The post 10 Things Our Kids REALLY Need appeared first on The Character Corner.

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When I first became a mom, more than anything else, I wanted to be the best mom I could be.  I talked to Godly moms who I looked up to, and looked for ways to be a great mom.  We only one chance at this parenting thing, so I wanted to get it right!

Over the 36 years of parenting and raising our eight kids, I continued to try to learn and grow as a mom.  I observed other moms that were doing a good job, and often asked for tips to help me.

Today I’d like to share five tips that helped me the most, and that will help you to be the great mom you want to be.

5 Parenting Tips For Being a Great Mom

1.  Teaching and training them should begin right away.

A child’s character is formed primarily in his early years, so it’s critical that we start early to teach and train them in God’s Word.

“And that from childhood you have known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.”  II Timothy 3:15

I have discovered that the harder you work at teaching and training your kids when they are young, the easier the rest of your parenting years will be.

There will still be some challenges and struggles, but over all that early training will make things go more smoothly as your kids get older.

2.  Teach obedience from the start.

As parents, God has put in the position of authority over our children.  It is our job and responsibility to exercise that authority faithfully.

God commands children to be obedient, and when we don’t require obedience of them, we aren’t being good stewards of the children God has entrusted to our care.

One of the reasons we need to teach our kids to obey us is so they will please God and receive His blessing.

However, another reason we really focused on obedience with our kids, is that  we wanted them to be obedient when God spoke to their hearts.

By teaching our kids first time obedience, we are preparing them to  listen to and obey God the first time He speaks to them.

3.  Give more love than discipline.

I found that on those days when one of my kids needed lots of training and correction, it was easy for me to get frustrated.  It was exhausting, and at times it irritated me that I had to keep stopping what I was doing to deal with that child.

Then God spoke to my heart and reminded me that I needed to intentionally show that child more love. Sometimes just spending a little extra time with that child is all that was needed.

They needed to know that I loved them, and enjoyed being with them.

This doesn’t mean you should skip the training and correction, but rather that you should be sure you are disciplining in love, and are conveying that love clearly.

Discipline always needs to be given in a spirit of love.

The best way to keep that spirit of love as you train and correct, is to remember that the goal of that training is not to change behavior, but to change the heart.  When you keep that focus, it will help you teach in love.

4.  Focus on their character.

Today we have a generation of young people who have poor character. Employers find it very hard to find young people to work for them and be dependable and honest.

We have a character crisis in our society and as Christian parents, we need to catch a vision for raising a generation of young people with good, strong Christian character!

It’s not the job of the church or the  Christian school.  It’s up to US!

As their parents, we are the best ones to teach them character, because we love them more than anyone else will, and we know them better.

 We can make a difference in society by raising our kids to love God and grow to be like Him. However, that won’t just happen.

We have to make character training a priority, and have a plan  for how we will help them develop and grow in their character.

5. Seek to win and keep the hearts of your children.

Winning your child’s heart should be one of your greatest parenting goals.

There is a spiritual battle waging for your child’s heart, and as a parent you can’t be complacent about it.  If we don’t win their heart, somebody else will.

The reason this is so important is because the one who has their heart is the one who will influence them.  As moms we want to have that place of influence,, so we can shape their values, and point them to God.

To help youm here is a free printable with 20 ways to win your child’s heart.

20 Ways To Win Your Child's Heart
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One of our top goals as we teach and train our kids is to bring them to maturity, but how can we tell if we are reaching that goal?  What are some signs of maturity in  your kids that you can look for?

One of the most important commands that God gives to parents is found in Ephesians 6:4 where we are told to “bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.”  The Greek word for “bring them up” means to rear to maturity.

So very clearly, God is telling us that this needs to be a priority of  intentional Biblical parenting. 

Keep in mind that all of our kids mature at different ages and stages, so don’t get discouraged if you don’t see signs of maturity as soon as you’d like to in some of your kids! They may be mature in some areas, but still growing in others.  That’s okay.  The key is to keep teaching and training them.

That’s why God gave us our kids for at least 18 years — so we could continue to raise them to maturity.

I was thinking about the  maturity I had noticed in one of my kids recently, and started thinking about the areas they had grown in, and what signs there are for maturity.

There are many, but these are the ones that stand out to me, as important things to work on while raising our kids.  Basically, it comes down to training them in character!

SIX SIGNS OF MATURITY IN YOUR CHILDREN 1.  Appreciation and respect for parents

Our kids have always been respectful to us for the most part, because that’s how they were raised to be.  However, appreciation wasn’t always there!

I noticed that  as they got older and had to assume more responsibilities on their own, they started being appreciative.   At that point they realized how much time and energy we had poured into their lives through teaching, training, giving support, etc.

You know your kids have  matured to this level when they no long have the “entitlement mentality,” but rather are grateful for what you give them, or do for them.

Need some ideas for this?  Here are some simple ways to teach respect to your children. 

2.  Awareness about finances

Kids often don’t realize the importance of being wise with money until they  begin paying for things with their own money. Suddenly they start to think before they spend, because its THEIR money now.  They realize that they need to budget their money, and spend it carefully.

It’s wise to help your kids learn how to use money at a fairly young age, by letting them save for something and see how long it takes to earn the money for it.  Showing them your family budget and bills for the month also gives them an awareness of the importance of being wise stewards when it comes to finances.

3.  Self-control

This is probably one of the biggest keys, because without self-control they are going to struggle in other areas of maturity.  When they have self-control they are able to discipline themselves to do what is right and best, regardless of whether they feel like it or not, and even when they don’t want to.  Self-control enables them to do the right thing, rather than living by their emotions.

To help you here are 7  Tips For Teaching Chilren Self-Control.

4.  Diligence in work

We worked very hard to teach our kids the importance of working hard, and being responsible and diligent in their work.  We saw this  pay off with each of them, when they got their first job.

Their employers appreciated them, and often it didn’t take long before they were given more responsibility and trust with their job, and given promotions.

It took time on our part to train them, but they often thank us for teaching them to work hard, and do their best.

Here are some Simple & Practical Ways To Teach Diligence To Your Children.

5.  Responsibility in taking care of things

When kids are young, they tend to leave toys all over the floor, bikes in the driveway, and clothes scattered throughout the house.  Part of maturity involves learning to be responsible and careful with things; putting toys or tools away when they’re done with them, putting clothes where they belong, and so on.

Again, as they get older and start paying for some of their own things, often they suddenly become very careful with those items, and the teaching they have been given takes root.

6.  Initiative

We taught our kids to have initiative from the time they were young, and they did to a certain extent — some more than others.  As they matured though, there was a huge difference in this area.

I would notice that they would see a need in the house, and take care of it.  (Yes, even my BOYS! )

I remember more than one of them  cleaning up the kitchen for me while I was out running some errands. Other times they would vacuum or pick up when things were messy, and I was busy with convention season.

They learned that if they saw a need, they should take care of it without being asked.

Here is a Practical Way To Teach Initiative.

It’s common to think that maturity is something that will just happen for our kids with age, but as parents we need to do OUR part to bring them up to maturity.

All kids WILL grow older, but they won’t all attain maturity unless we start early and help them grow in these areas of character. Start when they are young, and train them in these different areas.

As parents, make it your goal to work intentionally to help your children grow to maturity.

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The post 6 Signs Of Maturity In Your Kids appeared first on The Character Corner.

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For me one of the biggest challenges of being a wife, mother, and teacher in our home school,  is  not allowing myself to get TOO busy.  Finding BALANCE, keeping focused on the priorities, and keeping them at the top of my daily list requires constant effort.  It’s so easy to miss the signs that you’re too busy with things that don’t matter or are even GOOD things, while letting them replace the most important things.

How do you know when you have allowed too much busyness?  There are always tell-tale signs! 

7 Signs That You’re Too Busy 1.  Neglecting time with God.

Jeremiah 2:32  Yet my people have forgotten me days without number.

Spending time with God is the foundation that everything  we do needs to rest upon.  When we let this time get crowded out by busyness, we begin trying to do things in our own strength and quickly become overwhelmed.

The busier you are, the more important it is to spend time seeking God and His wisdom.

2.  Neglecting your priorities.

When you find that your priorities are often being pushed aside for other activities, it’s time to re-evaluate.

Take a look at The Most Important Goals & Priorities to Have When Parenting Intentionally, then take a few minutes to evaluate how you re doing in those areas.

3.  Neglecting your spouse.

The relationship with your spouse is the most important one, after your relationship with God.  It’s important to be purposeful in nurturing your marriage.

Here are some  tips to help you keep your marriage strong:  How To Avoid An Expiration Date On Your Marriage.

4.  Neglecting your family.

Do you find yourself just rushing through the things that you “have” to do with or for your family ?

Are you too busy online or without outside activities to be available for them?  When you find yourself feeling resentment about serving your family, you are too busy.

I share a time when I wasn’t exactly being an available parent in this post:  7 Tips For Being An Available Parent. 

5.  Neglecting care of your house.

I will be the first to say that this isn’t my top priority, and certainly wasn’t when I had lots of little ones running around.

However,  it is important to at least make time for regular maintenance cleaning, and keeping things picked up.  (Enlist the help of your kids!)

6.  Neglecting time for rest.

It is never okay to go for long periods of time with too little sleep, if you can avoid it.

Sometimes we have an extra full schedule that may cause us to have a bit less sleep for a few days, or maybe sick kids that are keeping us up at night.  But sleep is essential!

You need it for your health, as well as your spirit.  You may get away with skimping on it for awhile, but it WILL catch up with you.

Learn to choose what really needs to be done, and what can be left undone in  order for you to get the rest you need!

7.  Neglecting self-care, and self-renewal.

Making time for self-care and self-renewal   is just as important getting enough sleep.  You can’t give and serve without taking time to refill your well. You will run dry.

What should you do when you realize you are too buy and are neglecting some of these areas?

Ask God to :

  • Give you wisdom to know what matters
  • Show you what can be left undone
  • Give you self-discipline to keep your God given priorities in place

Be aware of these signs that you’re too busy, and regularly check to make sure you are being faithful in the areas that matter, and not letting busyness distract you from your priorities.

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The post 7 Signs That You’re Too Busy appeared first on The Character Corner.

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Except the LORD build the house, they labour in vain that build it: Psalm 127:1a

As Christian parents, we desire to build our families on the word of God. We understand the value of Scripture and applying it to our lives. The command in Proverbs 22:6 affirms the heart of our parenting “Train up a child in the way he should go”.

There IS a way our children should go and God expects us to show it to them!

But how do we actually build that strong family foundation on the word of God?

Training is more than simply enforcing a certain form of behavior. Training is guiding and directing the heart toward righteousness.

While our words as parents can affect the behavior of our children, many times, it seems our words are powerless to affect the hearts of our children. Our words don’t get past the surface issue to penetrate to the heart.

We need God’s Word to reach the hearts of our children, as His Word is so much more powerful than OUR words. It is such a simple truth, but so incredibly important as we seek to train our children!

We know this, yet when faced with a behavior or attitude problem with our kids, instead of pulling out the powerful piercing sword that God has given us, we resort to our own powerless words.

But what if we didn’t?

  • What would happen if you knew where to turn to in God’s word to find what you need in those moments?
  • What if you had easy access to thousands of verses organized by topic to meet you where you are at?
  • How would your parenting change if, at your fingertips, you could have Scriptures laid out for you showing character contrasts?
  • And most importantly how much more intentional could you become in building a solid foundation with God’s word at the center of your family?
Building By The Book – A Practical Resource for Building Your Family on the Word of God

This is a wonderful tool to use when training and correcting your children with God’s Word, rather than simply using your own words.

You can use this resource for:

  • Dealing with specific behavior problems
  • Family Devotions
  • Growing in personal Bible study
  • As bite-sized reading plans for young readers

Rather than a book of lessons, this is a resource to help you build your family on the Word of God.

Take a look at the Table of Contents and the sneak peek below to get an idea of just how valuable this resource will be to your family as you strive to build on the Word of God!

Download this practical resource and print it to have in hand when you need it most (Print 2-sided for best results and viewing).

There are thousands of verses organized by topic that you can refer to, Scriptures showing character contrasts, Family Devotions Log as well as bite-sized reading plans for young readers or for simple Family Devotions!

As Moses tells us in Deuteronomy 6:6-7  “And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.”

Let’s not lose sight of God’s desire for us in parenting our children to have a strong foundation in Him.

Grab your copy of Building By The Book – A Practical Resource for Building Your Family on the Word of God at this introductory price of only $13,  before the price  goes up to $18. 

Purchase your copy and be a part of God’s work in the Philippines!

When you purchase your copy of Building By The Book by my son,  Mike Morrissey, the funds are going to help support the purchase of a building for their church about half a mile from where they are  currently located. Any profits will be designated for their building fund!

Help support a Missionary and his work today, while building your family on the Word of God! Get your copy now for only $13! (Reg. price $18)

The post How to Build Your Family on the Word of God appeared first on The Character Corner.

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Often by the time summer break comes, we are tired and just want to sit back and relax ALL summer.  However, rather than just letting those months fly by aimlessly, why not plan on making summer count?

As enticing as a summer with no plans or structure may sound to your tired mind and body, I have found from personal experience that a summer of no routine and no goals was NOT a good idea!

Kids quickly got bored, bad attitudes became the norm, and the house was often filled with complaining and bickering.

Not my idea of a good way to spend our summer!

Simple tips for  making summer count: 1.  Have a routine to your days.

Kids function much better when they have a daily routine to guide their days.  They won’t mind the fact that jobs or reading are part of the routine, if they know it ahead of time.

For my kids the problem began when I would just spring things on them when they had already made their own plans for how they were going to spend their day.

In the summer, I think it’s great to give them lots of free time that they can spend how they choose, but it should still be within the confines of a routine.

2.  When planning the routine, make sure to include your priorities.

For us this meant that kids who were able to read the Bible on their own, had a quiet time each morning right after  breakfast, for about 15 minutes.

Then we would gather together for a Bible-based character lesson that included memorizing Scripture.  Little ones were included, but could play with quiet toys while listening.  (They take in way more than you think they are, as they play while listening in.)


Make sure you remember to schedule time for your own personal priorities, as well.  Be sure to include time with God, exercise, reading motivational books, etc.

3.  Schedule time for reading.

Depending on the ages of your kids, this can be family read aloud time, or kids can have a set time to read quietly.  Scheduling two separate reading times is great, so you can do both!

Did you know that  2 months of reading skills are lost over the summer if your kids aren’t reading? Kids need 2-3 hours a week during summer vacation to prevent learning loss.

Join my BOOK NOOK on Facebook for summer reading tips, book giveaways, book suggestions, and more!

Don’t let them fall into that summer slide, and lose skills. Keep them reading and learning.

4.  Schedule in time for chores.

Find a chore system that works for your family, and have a set time when everyone is working on their jobs.  This way work can be done together, which is always more enjoyable.

It also allows for training time of younger ones by Mom, or an older sibling working with them. (Be sure to grab our free age-appropriate chore chart pack at the end of this post!)

5.  Schedule in time to serve.

Find something you can do together as a family to serve others.

This could be visiting widows from the church, or going to a nursing home and singing for the residents, or giving them pictures the kids colored.

If your family is large enough, or you have another homeschooling family you are friends with, consider planning programs the kids can do at the nursing homes.

Other ideas would be:

  • Helping if there is a need for cleaning or some other work at your church
  • Doing something to help an elderly neighbor
  • Taking a meal to a new mom or offering to watch her kids for a few hours

If you get excited about serving, your kids will too!  There is a joy it brings, that will make them want to do it again.

6.  Schedule in time for fun.

I would suggest sitting down as a family and getting ideas of what the kids would like to do during the summer.

You might be surprised at some of the simple things they come up with!  Game nights, baking, bike rides, a trip to the park, etc.

Focus on winning and keeping the hearts of your children this summer. Schedule  fun family activities that will enable you to make heart ties with your kids, while making memories.

Having a nice mix of routine and worthwhile activities along with some free time is  not only a great way for making summer count, but also a sure way to enjoy the summer!

Grab our  FREE 15 page age appropriate chore chore package!

The post 6 Tips For Making Summer Count appeared first on The Character Corner.

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