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A few weeks ago, I was working from a local coffee shop when I noticed a group of about 8 ladies sitting at a table nearby.  I saw that they had Bibles open and they seemed to be engaged in some earnest discussion.  As I was preparing a piece of teaching on parenting, I thought, "this is a great opportunity to get some feedback from real life, local women about what they wished their husbands knew (or remembered) when it came to parenting.  Here is what they shared with me:

  • Be intentional about the time that you have with your kids. Have a plan, don’t be passive, be opportunistic.

  • Be present when you are with your kids. Don’t bring your work or distractions into your parenting time.

  • Get on the same page with your wife about your parenting values, philosophies and discipline.

  • Remember you only have a certain number of recitals, games, etc. Make them count.

  • Focus on forming the heart and character of the kids, not just conforming them to your rules.

  • Give them freedom to talk about difficult subjects, even when they are disagreeing with you or make you feel uncomfortable.

  • Go for walks and drives… shoulder to shoulder conversations are more influential than face to face lectures.

  • Be consistent in your discipline.  Don’t allow disrespect or disobedience in some situations and then be very strict in others.

What would you add?  Where do you need to grow?  Have a conversation with your spouse and discuss your shared views on parenting your children.