Complete Idiot’s Guide to Parenting

I have done it everyone!  We are not even parents yet and I have found the Complete Idiot’s Guide to Parenting.  No more crying, fussing, unhappy children.  No more whining rebellious teenagers.  With this guide, you will learn to parent the perfect children.  Children that your own parents will be shocked to see.  Children that you can sit with in the front row at church.

Sounds great right?  It’s like a dream come true for some of you.  This is what you wish parenting could be.  Why do parents want this? Is it that you want your children to behave like you do in order to take them to places you want to go?  Is it so that you can have another friend in your lives?  Or is it because the more your children cry, fuss and rebel, the more it reflects on you as parents?

There is a book that I found and really want to read called “No More Perfect Kids” by Jill Savage and Kathy Koch.  In this book Jill talks about how your children are created in God’s image and not your own.  She speaks to parents who want to raise perfect children, pointing out that we are in an imperfect world.  She recognizes that parents set unrealistic expectations of their children and tries to encourage parents to sometimes let their kids just be kids.

What I’ve begun to realize is children are not supposed to be perfect.  If your children were perfect all the time, where would the challenge or sense of legacy come from?  If there were no more banged heads, no more selfishness, no more drama, then how can you teach your children?  There are going to be moments of crying, of injuries, of mistakes and through it all you love on them.  At the end of the day, the imperfectness of your children provides you an opportunity to show God’s love, to forgive and to teach the faith.

Back to the Complete Idiot’s Guide to Parenting, tonight I attended a parenting Bible study.  Yes, I realize I am not a parent yet, but I want to learn from others about parenting.  There is no manual for parenting unfortunately.  Though if there was it would probably be larger than Encyclopedia Britannica.  The guide to parenting is to build yourselves a network of parents you trust and meet regularly together.  Foster relationships with people in all stages of parenting and there you will find wisdom.

We look forward to the day we can hold our first child and raise that imperfect child up in faith, knowing they will be surrounded with love from everyone around us.  We are excited to start this adventure and cannot wait to share the highest highs and lowest lows.  To God be the Glory, Forever.

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