Dear Dave + April....A Tuesday Series.
Instead of love letters this week, we thought we'd share with you a few things we learned and discussed in our Marriage and Family Relations class this past Sunday. It caused some great conversation between Dave and I about being on the same page in raising children so there is one less stressor in our marriage.
Plus, since we are always honest here, someone has a little more work to do on focusing on 'talking up' and someone else....ahem....needs to work on a little patience on holidays when the someone earlier wants to take a nap and the other someone is wanting the house completely picked up after the holiday tornado is over. We aren't naming any names here though.
Back to the topic at hand. The topic was essentially how to teach your children religious principles, help them have a closer relationship with Jesus Christ and teach them right from wrong. Here's our thoughts:
:Encourage children to pray on their own and have their own scripture/bible study time. We have always taught this, but rarely do we ask our children or check up on them to make sure they are doing it. We all need friendly daily reminders and we have been lacking in that department. Good food for thought.
:Our children need to be taught that there are consequences to their actions, but how do we help them feel safe in telling us their wrong doings to get direction and help from us. One rule in our home is that our children will never get in trouble twice for the same thing. If they are disciplined in school, they are safe at home. If mom has disciplined then daddy can't come home and open a can of whoop a*& on them. This allows them to feel safe in talking about what they did wrong.
:Along the same line, we need to share with our children the beautiful feeling of repentance. The weight that is lifted off when a wrong doing is forgiven. Share some personal feelings when your burden has been lifted by confessing of a sin. Our children also need to know that their Bishop/Pastor/Priest is loving and will welcome them with open arms to help them right their wrong. They shouldn't be afraid.
:Love the wayward child but still set guidelines and rules within the walls of your own home that you expect them to follow. (i.e. attending church on Sunday with the family is NOT an option)
:To help your children understand and know the Savior better, don't miss opportunities to see a live nativity or a re-enactment of a biblical story. Watch Bible movies. All these things help the Bible stories come to life and help us all relate to them as real people...not just people we read about.
:Hold Family Night where you can teach a simple religious principle and have family council to check in with each family member weekly.
Part of enriching our marriage definitely involves how we raise our children. Agreeing beforehand on how to handle situations helps keep peace between mommy and daddy during a difficult situation. One big thing that we have done is instead of one parent issuing a consequence without talking to the other one first, the disciplining parent simply states that there will be a consequence that will follow that mom and dad will both discuss and agree upon. This also shows your children that you are a united front.
Hope this offers as much food for thought as it did for us. It's always nice to have a topic to sit and chat about....especially if you have lost the art of chatting. Which isn't a problem for us. I'm kind of a talker. But we do see lots of couples out to eat with nothing to talk about.
On one other note, Dave and I went on an amazing date night Saturday for his 40th birthday. Details tomorrow complete with What We Wore!