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I stopped at a traffic light—no cars at all at the cross junction. I was so tempted to go…
Then, my mind flashed back to a few years ago when I was fetching some students back from school to a child care center.
“My dad said we should stop when the traffic light is red. So, you shouldn’t go,” the 10-year-old boy said to me. He read my body language so well. I really wanted to go as there were no cars in sight. I am glad I didn’t.
A dad’s role in a child’s life
A father is not just the head of the family, a person who “brings home the bacon” or a disciplinarian figure, but the “figure” that a child looks up to and loves, despite them being the person who has to discipline the child.
I love eating Snickers. So, do my students. Just recently, I gave one of my students a Snickers. The 8-year-old boy kept it and took it home. I asked him a few days later.
“Why didn’t you eat it?”
“I kept it for my dad.”
“How come you didn’t give it to your mum? I thought she likes Snickers.”
“I just wanted to give it to my dad.”
Though his mum is the one who gives him almost everything, it’s the dad that got the “reward.”
A mom’s role in a child’s life
I thought of a mild autistic girl I am teaching now. Her mother brought her to me to teach her Maths when she was six years old. Her mother told me she is taking her to therapy centers to treat her autism. She spent a lot of time with her daughter, and two years later, she is getting better at reading and studying.
I salute her for making the necessary sacrifices for her children. A mother is someone who provides us with unconditional love.
My time with students is limited as a teacher, whereas parents spend most of their time with their children. Therefore, I urge parents to make sure that they are being good “influencers” in their children’s lives.
As the saying goes, “Your children get only one childhood. Make it memorable.” Give them good memories and a solid foundation to build on as they get older.
Most importantly, love them unconditionally and communicate with them, no matter what happens.
Biblical roles in the family
A student of mine always completes the work I give him diligently. On one occasion, he seemed distracted. He made so many mistakes that were unlike him.
“Is anything wrong with you today?”
“My parents are going through a divorce, and I don’t know what to do.”
I am not sure how to make him feel better. All I can say is, “Adults will work things out, just be strong, and if you need any help, I’m here for you.”
To raise healthy children, we need a strong family unit. The Bible teaches us how to build one, with each member playing a unique role.
Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord. (Ephesians 5:22 [NIV])
Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her… (Ephesians 5:25 [NIV])
Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. “Honor your father and mother”—which is the first commandment with a promise—”so that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth.”
Parents, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord. (Ephesians 6:1-4 [NIV])
There’s so much to glean from the Bible. For me, it has been an integral part of my growing-up years. There’s so much wisdom from God! He has been an important influencer in my life.
The rise of new “influencers”
During the last two years of the pandemic, new “influencers” have emerged and are creating havoc among the young. It’s none other than digital tools such as handphones, tablets, and computers. How have these tools affected them, whether positively or negatively? How can we combat this, especially the negative impacts?
Stay tuned for our next article on this.