Anticipatory Parenting

Hey Moms and Dads:

I know it ain’t easy, but the goal is to stay one step ahead of what your kids need. I call it “anticipatory parenting.” Maybe this list will help.

  • Move the babywipes within reach BEFORE you open the diaper.
  • Install outlet protectors BEFORE the toddler starts crawling.
  • Check out the schools BEFORE you move into a neighborhood.
  • Coming home from work, get in the right frame of mind BEFORE you walk in the front door.
  • Stash a hidden supply of poster boards and colored markers BEFORE they come to you at 7 p.m. frantic about a school project due the next day.
  • Encourage young teenagers to commit to sexual purity BEFORE their first date.
  • Do the “where do babies come from” talk BEFORE they hear about it on the playground or in their school’s sex ed curriculum.
  • Hit the batting cages and play catch with your son or daughter a couple weeks BEFORE baseball or softball tryouts.
  • Decide which church service you’re going to as a family BEFORE going to bed Saturday night.
  • Teach them dinner table etiquette – napkins in lap, what fork to use when, elbows off the table – BEFORE going to the fancy restaurant or reception.
  • Teach your son how to tie a tie BEFORE prom night.
  • Train up your children in the way they should go BEFORE turning them loose on the world, and when they are old they will not depart from it. (Proverbs 22:6 paraphrased)
  • Demonstrate defensive driving, review the financial aspects of car insurance, and establish that driving is not a right, but a privilege BEFORE they get their license.
  • Give a quick call to the hosting parents BEFORE dropping your kid at a sleepover.
  • Put your kids’ birthdays, concerts, and game schedules on your calendar BEFORE any other appointments.
  • Lead your children to trust God BEFORE they face eternity and explain how Jesus is eager to “prepare a place” for them.  (See John 14:1-3)

Your kids–and the world–are counting on you.

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