If you are a parent, teaching character traits that are godly is not for the faint of heart.
Down deep, you know you need to capitalize on teaching good behaviors to your kids, but some days it just ain’t happening. Perhaps today is one of those days you can’t see straight because your “sweet precious” did something that was not “okay” to say the least.
That’s when the yelling started. Now you feel guilty and frustrated, but said child will not do what you say.
Like most moms, you are striving to do everything you can to raise a good human who loves Jesus, but teaching character traits that are godly seems hard when you are juggling family, job, sports, church, etc.
And who said anything about being a teacher? You don’t know how to teach!
I’ll let you in on a secret: you are already teaching your kids every day by what you say and do. They are little mirrors reflecting you.
Since you are already teaching character traits you might as well teach them godly ones, right?
If you are having a hard time knowing where to start, check out these 9 positive character traits that are godly. Teaching character traits from this list is a great way to not only introduce good behavior but also incorporate the “why” which is Jesus.
What are Positive Character Traits?
Positive character traits that are godly are behaviors that make us want to be around another person. When someone is kind, loving, helpful, and generous, we can’t help but enjoy their company as they reflect Jesus.
Likewise, when a child’s character or personality is unbecoming, we want to run!
Sadly, we are not born with a lot of positive character traits. In fact, we are genuinely selfish and proud by nature. We want our own way!
Good behavior is molded, praised, and formed over time with lots of prayer and hard work by parents and those in their inner circle; it requires an enormous amount of patience.
Teaching Character Traits: 9 Positive Traits That Are Godly
Teaching character traits that are godly needs to be as much of a habit in your household as brushing your teeth and bathing. Practicing them on a regular basis will give your kids a leg up in life.
Check out this list and see how to teach character traits that reflect Jesus. It will reap dividends for a lifetime:
1. Good Attitude
Your child needs to have a good attitude. This is one of the most important positive character traits for kids to have.
When they are younger, they need to accept “no.”
When they are older, there can be some dialogue. Let your kids express their disappointments respectfully and ask for reconsideration.
Let them talk.
Think about what they are saying.
If you have reconsidered, and it is still “no, “they need to accept your decision without attitude.
A consistently good attitude may not happen all the time, so keep working with your kids.
When they are young, they can sit in their room for a few minutes if they don’t express a kind response.
When they are older, do not tolerate back talk. Put a consequence in place that is meaningful
And praise when they get it right. Eventually, they will learn.
And by the way, how is your attitude? If yours is bad, don’t expect your kid’s disposition to improve. Stinky attitudes are learned.
When teaching character traits, don’t forget to instill a work ethic that includes grit. Give your kids chores to do every day or almost every day. Nothing oppressive, but enough to understand they need to contribute to the family.
This can start as early as preschool.
Teach them how to clean up after themselves when they leave the room. In later years, you can have your kids clean the bathroom, do laundry, mow the lawn, or help with dishes.
Don’t let them move on to free time until these chores are done.
Your kids will need to transfer this work ethic to the classroom. Good students work hard to achieve their goals.
More importantly, they don’t give up when it gets hard. They know how to weather the storms of life. This is one of the most positive character traits for kids to develop.
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3. Accept Personal Responsibility
When your kids do something wrong, teach them to make amends immediately. Not only apologize for what was said or done but make reparations, if necessary. Remember that broken window? Have them work it off or help fix it!
Pray for the Holy Spirit to convict their hearts when they don’t feel sorry.
If you let them get away with things at home, they will expect the same thing at school. Your kids will be in for a rude awakening when their teacher or principal won’t be so quick to brush over bad behavior.
This is why teaching character traits is so important for godly behavior.
Being teachable is one of the most important positive character traits for kids to have. It is the gateway to all learning. If your kids do not receive instruction, then they will not learn.
You may be wondering how to help your kids be more teachable.
There are picture books for teaching character traits and Bible stories about those who listened and obeyed and those who did not.
When they are older, allow situations to naturally happen and then talk about them. Suggest ways that it could have been handled better and what they did right.
Role play a difficult situation and coach them in making the right decision so that when it happens in real life they will know what to do.
And make sure to constantly praise them when they do obey, listen, and follow instructions.
Don’t avoid conflict. Embrace each power struggle as an opportunity for your kids to develop lifelong behaviors that are godly.
It will pay off when your kids are older. They will be prepared for life.
Forgiveness is an incredibly positive character trait to teach your kids. If your child is constantly angry, find out why. Find a time to you can talk.
Perhaps someone is violating your child’s boundaries, being bullied, or doesn’t know how to navigate a severed friendship. Once you know, you can help him work through the situation appropriately.
Keep pointing to the end goal of forgiveness.
When kids don’t forgive, grudges manifest over time. It can last for years and play out in horrible ways
Most of all, model forgiveness. You need to let go of offenses so your kids know how to do it.
Teaching character traits such as forgiveness is important. It could save your kids years of heartache or worse.
6. Faith in God
Teach your kids about God. If you do not give them a moral compass, they may make themselves a god in the future. It may not be that big of a deal when they are young, but it will rear its ugly head when your kids hit their teens.
I have seen this many times as a teacher. Same scenario, different kids. Same outcome. Disastrous.
Start when they are young. Take them to church, read the Bible to them, pray together, and talk about your own faith.
You don’t need to preach at them, just live in a godly way. Your actions teach more than anything you say.
If you don’t have faith, then you will not be able to pass down your faith to the next generation. Instead, it will be something like, “Whatever you feel is right.”
Your kids need more than feelings to get through life. They need a Savior.
This is one of the most important positive character traits for kids to become godly.
Teach your kids to love well. Help them to be kind and loving in all of their actions. Don’t let them get away with hitting, spitting, or kicking others or things. Give consequences when this happens.
This starts at home. Nurture sibling relationships. Don’t allow them to abuse each other.
Love your kids unconditionally, and they will learn what love looks like from you. If you are constantly yelling, threatening, or scaring your kids, they will not know how to love others well.
Teaching character traits such as love is one of the most powerful ways to help your kids also connect with a loving God
8. Tell the Truth
Teach your kids to tell the truth.
All kids lie at one time or another. Your job is to deal with it early.
Many parents think it is cute and funny, but it is not. It will become a habit if you don’t catch it soon.
Liars eventually get caught. And many times, the consequences are bad if it is later in life. Teach your kids to tell the truth now, no matter how small it is.
There are books for teaching character traits. Read them to your kids when they are little. Talk about it in times of non-conflict.
Praise and reward when your kids choose the truth and could have lied. Use positive reinforcement over negative.
This one positive character trait taught early will save lots of hardship in life later.
9. Respect Authority
Teach your kids to respect authority. This starts at home.
Require your kids to obey you. When they don’t, have a consequence in place that you both have discussed ahead of time so that when it happens you know what follows.
For instance, tell Johnny that he needs to put his bike in the garage after he rides it. And say that he will not be able to ride the next day if he forgets to do it.
When he does put it up, praise him!
If he forgets, you both know the consequences.
Follow through with the consequences and don’t let Johnny talk you out of it. If there are tantrums, you need to add an extra day of no riding.
Respect includes not only you but also property, others, and even themselves. Again, it is important you model the same behavior.
If you don’t respect others, the law, or yourself then how can your child learn respect?
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Why Is Teaching Character Traits Important?
Teaching character traits is important because God commands us “to train up a child in the way he should go, so he will not depart from it” ( Proverbs 22:6). This is not to make you panic or demand perfection; it is to help you be aware of your divine responsibility to teach your kids how to follow Jesus and reflect His behavior.
Proverbs 10:1 says, “The proverbs of Solomon: A wise son brings joy to his father, but a foolish son brings grief to his mother”(NIV).
What you do or don’t do makes a difference in the life of your child. Not teaching character traits may bring grief to your household and ruin your family. Take the time to develop positive character traits that are godly, and you will enjoy them as adults.
What do you do with your kids when teaching character traits? How do you help them be more godly?
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