“After Jesus was baptized, He went up immediately from the water. The heavens suddenly opened for Him, and He saw the Sprit of God descending like a dove and coming down on Him. And there came a voice from heaven: ‘This is My beloved Son. I take delight in Him!’” Matthew 3:16-17, HCSB
How often do your children hear you brag on them? I don’t mean being the obnoxious parent at the party who thinks their kid is the second coming. I mean speaking life into them by highlighting aspects of their character that are wonderful. In a marriage lesson not too long ago, the instructor suggested having something great to say about your spouse always; especially to other people. This isn’t the phony kind of made up ignore real issues type of compliment. But truly great things to say. The point the instructor was making is this: if you are constantly looking to have a compliment, not only will you find it, but you’ll also fall deeper in love with this amazing person God has gifted to you! And, who doesn’t LOVE to overhear their spouse talking about how great they are?!
The same is true for us as parents. Your children are constantly looking to you as their validation and personality development. Look for a way to encourage their self-confidence. Again, we’re not talking about phony or shallow compliments, but deep personality characteristics that you see consistently.
Paul talks about this in Philippians chapter 4. Take a look,
“Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.” Philippians 4:8, ESV
Earlier in this letter Paul talked about having the mind of Jesus within them to help them maintain unity in the brotherhood. He doesn’t want you overlooking problems that need to be addressed, but rather he encourages us to be fully committed to searching for the honorable, just, pure, lovely and commendable attributes of our kids. Doing this will give us clarity into who God intends for our children to be and become. I honestly believe that He had a specific honorable purpose in mind when He created our children. Our job as parents is to help them along the way to figure out who that person is and encourage them (even to other people) to grow in those areas that are lovely and commendable!!
God FTW (for the win!!) Thank You Father for showing us the example!! Brag on you babies as they grow and do things that are commendable!!