Thursday, September 1, 2011

Teach Your Children Well: The Difference Between Success and Failure

I wanted to share a tough lessen with you, dealing with teenagers.

There are lessons that will come, that will be harder on you than them. I never thought that was true, but it is.

One of my boys was given the job of mowing the front and sides of our lawn. He had been wanting to have
more responsibilities as a teenager. (Well, that's not exactly what he said. This comes out differently from the mouth of a teenager. It sorta sounds like; "What difference does it make getting older? I don't get to do anything else." ;-)

Well, he mowed the lawn the first time and we complimented him on how well he had done. Everything was neat and good.

But the second time he mowed, he skipped an area where he needed to move a few things. He didn't move them and he didn't mow this tiny little area.

Now, many parents would not want to exert the energy to deal with this and would shrug it off. Other parents would not want to 'hurt their feelings' so they would simply 'let it go'.

But you who seek to train up a child in the way he should go know in your heart that this cannot be passed over.

THIS is an opportunity to teach your child the difference between success and failure. Successful people pay attention to detail. Prudence mandates that little things not be shrugged off.

The hard part for you? Deny what pity would have you do. Pity for your child says; "Don't make him fix it, just tell him." But dear mother, it is only in "fixing it" that he can feel the job is well-done. Seeing his error, his conscience would demand that it be made right, so allow it. If his conscience is not working, then demand it, so that his conscience will be affected in the future. You want to shape more than outward behavior, you want to shape his heart.

The Bible teaches these principles.
Eccl 9:10  Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with thy might...

Eph 6:5-8  Servants, be obedient to them that are your masters according to the flesh, with fear and trembling, in singleness of your heart, as unto Christ; Not with eyeservice, as menpleasers; but as the servants of Christ, doing the will of God from the heart;  With good will doing service, as to the Lord, and not to men: Knowing that whatsoever good thing any man doeth, the same shall he receive of the Lord, whether he be bond or free.

Col 3:23  And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men..

-love in Christ

*This post is linked to Far Above Rubies/ Domestically Divine Tuesdays.


Frugal in Florida said...

It's been a while since I've stopped by (you CHANGED the blog!) ... but this sort of made me reach inside myself because I have problems with telling the Boy that he failed when he didn't do something 100% ... I KNOW he needs to be told it's not right, but yet, I don't want to make him feel like he did it WRONG ... such a fine line :( ... Hubby is ruthless, whereas I'm like "well, you can see it's not done the way it would be if we PAID a PROFESSIONAL to do it kid" ... because technically, it should be if I'm paying you a little bit to do something ... uggg. I guess it's not all bad since he's off to college! ::off to read what I've been missing::

Donna said...

I'm glad you're here!
It is hard. And yes, dads are sometimes tough. On this one, my dh told me that he had left the strip and wondered whether to say something but admitted he didn't want to be "mean" or discourage him.

But what happened was....dh was listening to a sermon called- "Teaching Your Children the Difference Between Success and Failure". The preacher specifically named "leaving a strip of grass in the yard" in the sermon. :-)

My dh brought the matter to me. He can be tough- but his pity runs very deep. So I immediately said, "I'll deal with it right now."

It was already dark and me and my son went out with flashlights. I reminded him of how proud I was of the job he did on the front then explained to him that God wanted me to teach him to do his best- not what was just convenient. Then I showed him.

It was so hard because I could see that he felt hurt. And he wanted so bad to make it right - right then...but it was dark. He didn't feel better until he was able to make it right.

I told him that I loved him and was very proud of him and that he had learned THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN SUCCESS AND FAILURE.

It touches my heart to tell the story- but I know in my heart- he'll be a better man for it.

He may or may not go to college one day. But whether he does...or he doesn't....I know he'll remember that lesson and be more cautious. But I know- it is SO hard. Very hard.

God knows it too- look:
Psa 103:13 Like as a father pitieth his children, so the LORD pitieth them that fear him.