Mission: Raising Children

Mission: Raising Children

The best thing that we could want for our children is for them to grow up to be loving individuals who have personal and moral integrity. More than a high paying job, good looks or personal success, we want our kids to be people of integrity who are confident, competent and consistent with their values. The world needs people who

  • can put the needs of others ahead of their own
  • give their word and mean it
  • be loyal in the face of adversity
  • be willing to sacrifice for another without complaining
  • be totally faithful to their commitments
  • put people ahead of things
  • always treat people with respect, recognizing their great dignity
  • be sincere and not pretend to be something they are not

… and much more.

The bottom line is we need to raise our kids to have good character, to be virtuous. All this boils down to good habits. They don’t happen overnight. They may take years to form, but we set down the building blocks from the time they are small – by our words, by our demands and most of all by our own example. The strength of their character will greatly depend on the foundation we have laid. When I recently attended a volleyball game for my son, I saw a poster on the wall that summed this up quite well. The poem is written by Frank Outlaw and says:

It’s All About Character

  • Watch your thoughts
  • They become words
  • Watch your words
  • They become actions
  • Watch your actions
  • They become habits
  • Watch your habits
  • They become character
  • Watch your character
  • It becomes your destiny.

Parents need to form this character in their children day by day through their vigilance and love. Results take time and the effort is worthwhile. The whole structure of integrity will be built on four major pillars upon which all the rest hinge. They are:

  • self-control (temperance)
  • sound judgement (prudence)
  • personal toughness (fortitude)
  • responsibility (justice)

When we keep these four main ingredients in mind and look for ways to solidify them, we are doing an enormous good for our children’s futures. Why? Because focusing on prestigious careers, financial success, great education etc. etc. is not enough. Even with all the material things working out, our kids will need the wherewithal to make it in their marriage, to think of others and to know how to deal with tough times in a sporting way.  When you focus on character as your primary mission, all the rest will take care of itself. No matter what the future holds, our kids will have the backbone to take on the adventure.

Dive into these excellent resources to learn more on this foundational topic:

 

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