Parenting can be so challenging but also so rewarding. Before we’re parents, we have these great ideas of how we’ll be the perfect parent, how great our children will be, and how smoothly life will go as we love our children well. Right?? However, then we become parents! Our children don’t cooperate with our ideals. We get overwhelmed, tired, and sometimes just want to take the easy route. We want to be good parents, but it’s just so hard!
It’s important to keep in mind that this is what God has called us to do. It’s going to be a lot of work to be a better parent, but God will give you what you need to run the race well. Let’s look at some essential Biblical parenting principles to help you along the way.
What is Christian Parenting?
As Christian parents, you are to teach your children about God at every opportunity throughout your day. God is to be the center of your life, and that will spill over into how you live and how you interact with your children. You are providing your children with an example of how God is over all parts of your life.
There are many Christian parenting books out there that will help you with general biblical parenting principles. However, it’s important to remember that these are often man’s wisdom although often based on godly principles. Keep in mind this classic passage from Deuteronomy.
“Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.” Deuteronomy 6: 4-9 ESV
What is the Goal of Christian Parenting?
What does God expect from parents? What is the goal of Christian parenting? Is it to have the smartest and well-rounded child possible? Is it to have a child who is polite and follows all the rules? What about having a child who has professed Christ? Yes, you should certainly want that for your child, but you will want a child whose heart has been changed by the gospel of Christ. The goal of Christian parenting is to have a child who is following Christ with all his or her heart.
In order to teach your children what it is like to follow Jesus wholeheartedly, you need to be modeling that in your own life. It’s impossible to truly teach them something you don’t believe. They will catch on and realize your words and actions don’t match up.
As parents, let’s model what it means to have a relationship with God. Let’s pass on our knowledge of who God is and how He wants us to live. Point out His love, His forgiveness, and His mercy. Show them how to praise God, even in the hard times. How we live will go a long way in teaching our children.
Now, let’s check out some essential Christian parenting tips!
This post may contain affiliate links. Please see my full disclosure for details.
Biblical Parenting Principles
There are many Christian parenting books with amazing Christian parenting advice. I’d definitely recommend reading a few to get some more wisdom with parenting, but the Bible should be your first source of information to find biblical teaching on parenting. Try doing a word study on “parenting/parents” or “teach your children.” For now, you just may want some Biblical principles of parenting to get you started, so check them out below.
1. Be a godly model
The way you live will go a long way in teaching your children. Be a good example by showing them what it’s like to have good Christian values. Be genuine. Show them that God is most important in your life and that you need to spend time with Him. If you say one thing and do another, they’ll know it.
2. Choose the core values you want to invest in
What values do you want to be important to your family? Talk this over with your husband and let these values determine your decisions. As Christian parents, time individually and as a family with God needs to be a priority. This is one of the best things you can do to raise godly children.
However, other things will vary from family to family. How will you serve others? Through hospitality or maybe serving at a food distribution location? Is homeschooling important? How will you invest in and grow with other believers?
3. Pray for your family daily
Prayer is so important. Take the time to pray for your family each day. Pray for them individually and for your family as a whole. Ask the Holy Spirit to intercede on your behalf.
Also, teach your family to pray as you pray together as a family. This will help you grow healthy relationships as a family as well.
4. Spend time in God’s Word together often
Your children won’t learn biblical values if you don’t take much time to teach them. Spend time diving into God’s Word together. Help them see the whole picture of the Bible, which will give them a big-picture view of God. Show them how the Old Testament points to Jesus and the New Testament revolves around Jesus and the Gospel. Make sure the Bible is the authority in your home.
5. Stay consistent and be intentional
This is a tough one for me, and perhaps it is for you as well. In the long run, though, consistency is important to help with good behavior. While it often may be hard work to build good character in our children, it will be so worth it in the long run!
It’s also important to be intentional with the time you have. Your family is such a great blessing, but you really do have to be intentional in order to reach your children’s hearts.
6. Keep an eternal perspective
It’s so easy to get distracted by what’s going on around you and what “everyone” else is doing. However, one of the foundational principles to remember is that many of these things have no value in the kingdom of God. In fact, they pull you away from what God has planned for you. As a Christian family, you have God’s wisdom to help you make decisions for your family. Re-evaluate often in this area.
What does the Bible say about the role of a mother? To learn more about being a godly mother, check out these 10 characteristics of a good mother according to the Bible.
7. Focus on the heart and not just the actions
Your children need to learn to embrace a relationship with God from the heart. Focusing on good works and following the rules will be superficial and temporary. Yes, they need to learn to obey but spend time teaching them the why. Help them see that sin is a problem in all of us and that we need the unconditional love of Jesus to help us.
8. Play Scripture music
I’m not just talking about Christian songs, but songs that are totally based on Bible verses. This will help them hide God’s Word in their hearts, even as little children. Seeds of Worship is one great option for incorporating Scripture into everyday life.
9. Teach your children to choose friends wisely
You want your children to not only be a great friend but also to learn how to be wise in the friends they choose. The heart of a child can easily be swayed by their friends, so godly friendships will help them do what’s right. Your child’s closest friends should share the Christian faith with them.
10. Be interested in each child and their interest
Really get to know each child. All our children are so very different and unique. They have special gifts and abilities. They learn differently and respond differently to positive and negative reinforcements. Be interested in what they’re interested in order to foster relationship. Learn what will help versus hurt them. Have a good conversation in order to really learn these things. This will help you know the best ways to help them as issues arise.
11. Show love individually
As mentioned above, our children are individuals and perceive love differently. I really love The 5 Love Languages of Children for help in determining your child’s love language and why that’s important. Sometimes bad behavior is just a result of your child not really feeling loved. A wise parent will learn to love her children well.
12. Talk about sex from an early age
We live in a sex-saturated world. Some practical tips would be to talk to our children about their bodies, safety tips regarding their bodies, and age-appropriate discussions about God’s design for sex. They will most likely be exposed to sex or pornography earlier than you think. Also, be sure to teach them about online safety.
13. Make sure your children know you are safe to talk to
Have open conversations with your children. Make sure they can come to you with tough things, especially when you have older children. It will be important to respond with love, even if you don’t agree with what they’re telling you. Make it a discussion and not a condemnation.
You want them to keep being open with you, so the best thing you can do if your children make wrong decisions is to keep investing in the relationship. By keeping that relationship open, you will be able to point out the rescuing grace of God.
14. Establish godly family traditions
Traditions are important to foster a sense of belonging. While there’s nothing wrong with some fun traditions, definitely have some God-honoring traditions. Strive for activities that point to Christ or reinforce Biblical values. Having family traditions will really improve your family life and enforce Christian principles.
Christian Parenting Advice
We’ve discussed what Christian parenting is along with the goal of Christian parenting. As you’ve seen, the best parenting advice is to grow your own relationship with God in order to keep that eternal perspective and teach it to your children. By keeping sight of your ultimate purpose, to raise your children to trust Christ for their salvation, you will be well on your way to becoming a great parent in the eyes of God.
My prayer is that these Biblical parenting principles were helpful in inspiring you to truly invest in the lives of your children in a God-honoring way. What tip do you need to get started on today? Do you have any other great tips? Please let me know in the comments below.
You may also be interested in these: