I was thinking about what one could do to help the younger generation to set goals and standards for the future.
I grew up in Waterfalls (predominantly) and spent the first foundational years of my life there. In sociology we say that socialization is very important and that at this stage we learn from what we see and experience and family, school or church are key in this growth. These all form an environment that shapes the way we think and function as we grow.
Me at 3 years vs My Daughter at 3 years
I never knew power cuts, water cuts, losses, lack defined in various forms and yet my little girl is born in such an environment. How do I reconcile my childhood years with hers? I picked up milk and newspapers at the gate when I grew up, she knows nothing about this. She is growing up with access to TV’, internet, cellphones, Wi-Fi, tablets, things that didn’t exist in my days in the part of the world that I grew up in.
Why is this difference a big deal?
When I understand that the context in which I grew up is different from the one in which my child is living now, it helps shape the way I talk to her, live with her well and discipline her. I have begun to learn how she thinks and perhaps “we can meet half way”. At the moment I am the Boss, the leader the one man she trusts and loves dearly (even if I have to say so myself). A time is coming when she by God’s grace has grown and makes her own decisions, what will matter then is the foundation that I help set now, where she learns to be loved, to be a good citizen, to be a child, to make mistakes, to say sorry, to respect others…. The list is endless.
There is and will always be one thing that I think should be constant. That’s the Jesus in her life and mine. His presence helps shape the way we both think and function. He is not limited by time. None of these fancy gadgets or lack of them scare HIM. I didn’t know Jesus because I didn’t have internet, I knew him because I was introduced to him when I was young. Oh! So my focus is to introduce my children to Jesus rather than say NO to everything they like (though this has its place). All I can say is “Jesus help me to be a better Parent”. In the meantime, I head to the wise words:
“Train up a child in the way he should go;even when he is old he will not depart from it.” English Standard Version
How’s your parenting going? Stay blessed.