EPHESIANS 6:4 "And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord."

PROVERBS 22:6 "Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it."


In the day that we live, juvenile crimes are ten times more prevalent than when I was a child and a big per cent of the reason is that the parents do not take charge of the home anymore. Most parents today work and the children are left, to a large extent, on their own. Many parents come home from work stressed after a full day of worries and problems and take out their bad day on their children; or they have no patience left at the end of a long day and are short with them. Children usually react to this treatment with either anger or sullenness. Older children often even leave the house with their peers and that is when they begin to get into trouble. And what is so sad about this scenario is that most of the time the parents do not have a clue as to what is wrong with their child. They feel they have provided a good home, food and the newest clothing and toys so their children should be well adjusted. But there is more to raising a child than food, shelter and clothes.

This does not just apply to children either. Wives need attention from their husbands and vice versa. Older parents need special attention from their adult children or they begin to feel they are not loved or needed. And adult children need attention and approval from their parents, also. Children need to know beyond a shadow of a doubt that their parents are there to listen to them at the end of the day no matter what kind of a day the parent has had. And parents, if you have had a bad day, explain it to your child. That way, they will be able to understand your mood and know it is not their fault!

I know exactly what Paul was talking about in the above scripture. As a child, I was often provoked by my parents and even by my older brother. Upon returning from church on Sundays, I would be grilled on what I had learned and then be laughed at for believing that a man could possibly be swallowed by a big fish and live. My parents were not Christians when I was growing up and my beliefs were often ridiculed. Believe me, being provoked by your family is one of the worst feelings there is. Being constantly ridiculed and made fun of is very undermining to a child and gives them a feeling of worthlessness. Children are like delicate flowers, they need tender, loving care and a lot of it! They need to be seriously listened to when they have a problem; even if you think the problem is silly! They need love and understanding when they have nightmares or a fight at school. Don't ever laugh at your child's problems! This is provoking them! Don't ever take your spouses blues or bad hair days lightly. Listen to them with concern and give them your direct attention! Many of us listen more attentively to a stranger in line at the supermarket than we do to our spouses! God made families to be there for each other but we all get so wrapped up in our own woes we forget the other people in our lives have their own set of problems and need us to be sympathetic to them from time to time. (Some more times than others!) That is what life and family is all about: being there for each other. If you have a life, and if you have a family, count yourself blessed and give them the time and attention they deserve!



There is beauty all around
When there's love at home;
There is joy in every sound
When there's love at home;
Peace and plenty here abide,
Smiling sweet on every side.
Time doth softly, sweetly glide
When there's love at home;

There's no question you can't ask
When there's love at home;
There is strength for any task
When there's love at home;
Sharing joy in work or play,
Confidence to face the day,
Knowing love will find a way
When there's love at home;

Anger cools and pressures cease
When there's love at home;
Children learn to live in peace
When there's love at home;
Courage to reach out in grace,
Meet a stranger face to face,
Find a reconciling place
When there's love at home;

Love becomes a way of life
When there's love at home;
Sweet insistent end to strife
When there's love at home;
Glad submission each one's gift,
Willing pledge to love and lift.
Healing balm for every rift
When there's love at home;

The above song (which is now playing)
Was written by John H. McNaughton




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