I hate parenting books. No matter how good the information is, no matter how equipped the person is to present it, what’s in those books never quite fits my own peculiar family situations.
We’re not building robots, or programming computers. Our children aren’t tiny soldiers, and our homes aren’t military encampments. Every child is an individual, formed and created by God’s loving hands, with a plan for his or her life already outlined in heaven. As parents, we’re raising individuals—creative, organic, unusual, intrinsically unique from every other human being.
Unfortunately for us as parents, that means we’re going to have to be able to flex. Children don’t come with a one-fits-all manual. We have to be open to change and adjust, willing to do things differently than our parents did (usually not an issue) and willing to do things differently than our friends, our church family, our community. That takes strength of mind and strength of will.
It comes down to it being YOUR responsibility to follow the instructions in Proverbs 22:6: “Train up a child in the way he should go [and in keeping with his individual gift or bent], and when he is old he will not depart from it.”