I wish I could say that we have arrived at the modern age and now we can breathe easier and relax a bit and turn over the instruction and entertainment of our children to some electronic device or nanny or government program or Sunday school class or something. But the fact is, it is still up to parents to raise the world’s next generation of human beings. And unless your husband is independently wealthy and available all day long, then it is mostly in mother’s hands. And how fine will the next generation be? How polite, articulate, kind, intelligent, sensitive and spiritual will they turn out?
It’s up to us, Mom!
In times past, all the work had to be done by the family members, and in so doing, side-by-side, they created lasting bonds and parents taught their children through modeling good behavior. When everyone works together in the fields to grow the family’s sustenance; the lessons of persistence, dependability, hard work, even-temper, and other virtues are built right in. It isn’t quite so easy these days to pass along our values.
One day I was talking with a spunky elderly lady who had just found out that her husband was terminally ill. She used a term I had never heard before, saying, “I guess I will have to pull up my socks and be a woman”. (I suppose in the olden days only little girls wore turned down socks.) That term stuck in my head, and recently, I had a little talk with myself over my “tiredness” and I said, “It is time to pull up your socks and be a woman and do this job of child-raising!”
The job is ours. We can use resources to help us, but ultimately we cannot transfer our responsibility to the school or the daycare or the scouts or the neighborhood or the community recreation department or the television/computer games. It is you and me, Mom. The joy will be ours if the job is done well, and the heartache will be ours if we are too tired to nurture and train our child. If you have a husband who is a good father and helps in this process, you are blessed indeed. Even without that support, we just do all we can, as mothers, and it will make a difference!
We can get parenting help from living in these modern times, if we choose wisely. A dishwasher is a marvelous time saver! I fear, however, that instead of sighing relief when the dishwasher goes on, and scooping up our kids to read a story or do a project together, that we are perhaps just jamming more work, hobbies, or entertainment into that freed-up time. Labor-saving devices can truly enrich our lives by making us more available to our kids—if we give our energy to our kids instead of dishwashing. But, we must make that choice!
“I believe our problems, almost every one, arise out of the homes of the people. If there is to be reformation, if there is to be a change, if there is to be a return to old and sacred values, it must begin in the home. It is here that truth is learned, that integrity is cultivated, that self-discipline is instilled, and that love is nurtured.” —G. B. H.
Work with your kids today!
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