Monday, December 8, 2008

The Yardstick List

If you go in my garage, you will see lots of marks up one wall. They all have a label - someone's name and age and the date. You will also see a pen yardstick beside them. It was such a big deal for my kids to measure themselves and watch themselves grow up the wall. Mark and I are marked there also. It was a true milestone when they each passed me up! There are even a few friend's names on the wall - some of those close friends of our kids that became "adopted family members". One day when we move out of this house, those marks will be the hardest to leave behind.

Just as we mark our children's physical growth, we should also mark their spiritual and social growth. Just like they won't stay little physically, we don't want them to stay small spiritually or socially either. The goal for all parents is to raise fully functioning adults.

Physical growth is fairly easy to plan. Feed them, keep them healthy, and have regular check-ups. But spiritual and social do we plan for that?

Make a list. Just like you know you want your child to grow larger, you should have in your mind what they need to be like as an adult. Make a list of all the traits you would like to see in your child when they are an adult.

For the last month we have had a survey on this blog of what you want your PeeWee to be like as an adult. Only a few of you responded, but the results were: trustworthy, compassionate, and happy. This may be the beginning of your list. Now what are you going to add to it? What traits do you want to help your PeeWee develop? What traits will help them succeed as an adult? What is the most important thing you want your PeeWee to have or learn?

So my challenge to you as parents is, make your yardstick list. Make a list of qualities you would like to see grow in your PeeWee as your PeeWee grows up the yardstick. Do it together. Write it and save it and use it as a teaching map. Do it today, because every day your PeeWee moves further up the yardstick. Without a yardstick list, you are parenting blindly and without purpose. You are leaving your child's spiritual and social development to chance. Make your list.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

My husband and I have just been discussing this. We are doing a parenting study in small group and what the author says over and over is "parent with the end in mind." Thanks for another nudge in the right direction!

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