Raising Boys: The Most Important Thing to do as a Parent
Are you raising boys?
If you are, I can understand the struggles of getting them out the door every day–alive.
I have one son and one daughter. They are both grown now, but I still remember what they were like when they were little.
From the moment they were born, I noticed a significant difference between the two of them. My son was always kicking his little legs around and moving constantly (even in the womb), whereas my daughter was lighter, less rambunctious, and seemed to be more fragile.
Boys are just different than girls. It is strange that statement may no longer be politically correct.
Last week, I talked about daughters being a graceful pillar and used Psalms 144:12 as a reference. It is the prayer of a king for victory and blessing.
This week I want to focus on the first part of the verse which is about sons.
Let’s review the verse in case you didn’t read last week’s blog. It says, “May our sons in their youth be like plants full grown, our daughters like corner pillars cut for the structure of a palace” (CSB).
In this post, I am going to give you suggestions on how to raise sons that are a blessing and act like full-grown plants in their youth. I will show the most important thing you need to do as a parent when raising boys.
These tips are not quick, but they do work. Unfortunately, I can’t help you with the fart noises. That’s still gonna be around for a while. Sorry.
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Full-grown in Youth?
So how do we get our sons to be like plants full-grown in their youth? Plants full-grown produce fruit.
You might be thinking this is asking a bit much from my son right now. He still watches Sponge Bob. But God seems to think it is possible. Here is another scripture I found to help give a bit more explanation.
Titus 2:6 says, “In a similar way urge the young men to be sensible and self-controlled and to behave wisely [taking life seriously]” (AMP). I find it interesting there isn’t anything in the Bible with this directive towards women. It is a guy thing.
If you have a boy in maybe fifth or sixth grade, you are probably laughing right now as he is not anywhere near being sensible or self-controlled. No boy is full-grown like a plant, producing fruit, or sensible and self-controlled at a young age.
I remember my son and some of his funny antics while growing up. There were days I thought I might end up on the funny farm if I heard one more silly saying or gross noise. I tried not to laugh and encourage it!
It is a tall order to think we can get our boys to take life seriously. The average boy is anything but serious.
So how do we even start?
Let me tell you a story. I think it will help you to see my point more clearly. I am going to tell you what NOT to do first.
The Rogue Male
Many years ago, my husband and I worked through a series in our Sunday school class called Song of Solomon by Tommy Nelson.
This was over twenty years ago, but I have never forgotten Tommy’s words. He said, “Don’t let your daughters marry a rogue male. He will abuse her.”
What is a rogue male? Tommy Nelson described this kind of young man as someone who is not willing to submit to Christ.
He is not willing to submit to authority. Arrogant.
Do you know the type? The bad boy. A boy out of control or defiant. Wow. That describes many of our male youth today.
How do these boys become that way?
They all had mothers and fathers who struggled to guide them. Some parents don’t try while other parents have tried really hard but have not been able to break through.
Instead, their kids have become arrogant, proud, and defiant. I believe a boy left to himself will go back to his sinful, base nature. Rogue. (Sin does that to us all.)
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My advice to mothers (and fathers) who are raising boys is to train them to be teachable. I think many parents do not realize that in order for our young men to be full-grown, sensible, and self-controlled they have to first be willing to take instruction.
We have to help our boys get past pride and stubbornness.
What I am saying is there is a step before the step. These verses are telling us to teach our young men to do certain things, but how can we teach them if they won’t listen?
They must first be teachable, then they can learn to do the other things God desires.
I realize girls can act this way, too. But boys are different.
They tend to have a more violent nature when they don’t listen to instructions and go their own way. The statistics prove my point.
When you look at incarceration rates by gender, it shows there are many more males in prison than females.
Related: How to Get to Your Child’s Heart
How Do You Raise Teachable Boys?
You may wonder how to raise boys that are teachable.
Don’t let your boys be disrespectful to an authority figure (you included), have a bad attitude, or display a heart of pride and arrogance. These character traits are the foundation of a rogue male.
Make your boys (and girls) be accountable for bad behavior. Give consequences. But also praise.
It is good to praise your sons (and daughters) when they listen, act humbly, or have a good attitude. You can start these things when they are a toddler.
Require your boys (and girls) to obey without pushback. Encourage a happy heart even when they don’t like something.
Being teachable is the foundation for respecting authority, doing well in school, or applying anything else the Bible instructs our young men to do.
I know this because I am a teacher. Kids who have a bad attitude learn nothing in my class. When they refuse to be taught, they typically start acting out and becoming a discipline problem.
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The Future of Your Child
Being teachable could affect the future of your child. Let me tell you how.
A month ago my son left home for good. He landed a really great job in another area. The job he applied for took four months of waiting before he was “tapped on the shoulder.”
After he started working at his new place of employment, he found out they had interviewed many people for his position.
I asked my son if he knew why they picked him out of all the other applicants. I was curious. He said they told him it was because he had a good attitude, and he was teachable.
That is what separated him from the rest of the applicants.
All the years we spent trying to make him competitive academically for a job, and it came down to his character. I am glad we focused a lot of time on character. It paid off in ways I never imagined.
Related: When Your Baby Leaves Home for Good
Your boys are a blessing. They are a gift from God to you and your spouse. Make sure they are a blessing to those around them at church, school, and in the community.
Help them learn to take instruction and be teachable young men so they will be like plants full-grown.
What are some things you do with your son so he has good character?
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Continue the conversation on Facebook and join the group Christian Parenting and Family. This is a place for moms with preschool age kids or older to talk about their struggles with parenting, family life, education, or marriage. You will find biblically based advise from other moms who want to raise godly kids.
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