Our kids need to know that they may not be good at everything, but they can have fun trying! Encourage your children to try something new this year. Talk with them about it. What are their fears? What are they excited about? We must learn to ask open ended questions; ones that can be answered with more than just one word. Do our children feel safe having these conversations with us? If not, they need to! Perhaps in the past we’ve acted harshly with them and they fear speaking up and sharing their hearts? Ask the Lord to help you heal these areas of your relationship.
How can we, as parents, give them the confidence to try new things in 2016? Here are 10 practical ideas that might help you out:
1. Don’t put so much pressure on them to be the “star”.
Have you been there? Secretly hoping your child will be the star player in their sports team? Leading role in their school play? Let’s not put so much pressure on our children to be the star. Encourage them to do their very best, but more importantly to have fun, and have a great attitude!
2. Try not to relive your dreams through them.
I know, it’s fun to see our children thrive. At times, we can be tempted to get lost in reliving our childhood dreams through them. Whether we realize it or not, this can harm them. Let them live their own dreams.
3. Let them pick!
Let them choose something new (within reason). Maybe it’s something you don’t necessarily enjoy. Perhaps they aren’t very good at it. That’s okay! Encourage them and watch them soar!
4. No matter what activity, stress a good attitude is always a “win”!
A good attitude is always a win! I love the way they tackle this topic in Lysa Terkeurst’s book, Win or Lose I love you.
Competition can bring out the worst in us, but it can also be an opportunity to learn impactful life lessons. That’s why it’s so important for kids to understand how to handle winning and losing!
5. Talk about how God has a plan in their successes and failures.
Discuss that God’s greatest goal in their life is to bring Him glory. Part of being a Christian, is to grow in our walk with Christ. To become like Him. God uses success and failure to bring about this change in us. Trials have the wonderful opportunity of making us stronger!
6. Encourage your child to finish well, no matter what they do!
It’s easy to give up! When things get tough, when we aren’t having fun, it’s tempting to want to throw in the towel. Really encourage your child to always strive to finish well!
7. Work for the Lord in all you do.
I still remember to this day, receiving a Precious Moments Bible from my Aunt Maria. I can picture her writing to me (a little 7 year old child) in the front cover. She encouraged me to do everything for the glory of God. Here’s the verse she wrote:
And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.
8. Love should be the key ingredient!
The key ingredient in any task, game, or life interaction, should be L-O-V-E. Without love, it means nothing. Read 1 Corinthians 13 as a family, and talk about how each person can show love better.
9. Think of others first.
When we are constantly thinking of ourselves first, it shows! Selfish people don’t make good friends, coworkers, or spouses. Thinking of others before ourselves is one of the best ways to show Christ to the world!
10. Talk to your kids about God using our weaknesses for His glory!
We aren’t going to be strong in everything we do. There is always something someone else does better! Discuss as a family how being a weak in an area, can actually bring God glory. The Bible says, in our weakness, He shines bright! How can we depend on God more when we struggle at something. How can we lean on Him for strength in our weaknesses? (2 Corinthians 12:8-9)
Do you desire more encouragement for your growing family? Be sure to check out Tommy Nelson. They have many amazing resources and freebies over at their site!