Note: In lieu of my regular gratitude posts for the next several weeks, I am going to join with The Pelsers for the 7 Tools for Cultivating Your Child’s Potential book club. This week we’re discussing Chapter 3.
In this chapter, Zan discusses the need to deepen the relationship we have with our children by spending time with them. She talks about how Jesus mentored the disciples by spending lots of time with them, teaching them about God and His ways as they went about their daily activities. Jesus is our example as we disciple our children.
There were several statements Zan made that really stood out to me:
Quality time arises out of, not in lieu of, quantity time.
It’s hard to schedule quality time; you certainly can’t mandate it with a child. Rather, quality time is something that emerges in the midst of life as you live it together.
As a stay-at-home, homeschooling mom, theoretically I spend most of my waking hours with my children. I have all the quantity time in the world. But that doesn’t guarantee that I have lots of quality time with them. At my house, quality time doesn’t emerge from the quantity time unless I stay engaged and present with my children.
What does this mean? At my house this means that I’ve had to start turning off the computer, ignoring my phone, and putting aside my to-do list for large chunks of time each day so that I can focus on my children. My time with them is short. If I don’t take the time to get to know them, find out what they’re thinking, and plant the seeds of God’s Word in their lives now, I will have missed the point completely.
The computer, phone, and to-do list will still be there after my girls are grown and gone. In the meantime, I’ll give up my pursuit of perfection, let the girls help me get things done as they can (so we can chat while we work), and enjoy every moment with them. As Zan pointed out,
We must remember that the time we have with our children is fleeting. We must be good stewards of it, just as we are good stewards of the other gifts and trusts God has given.
I want to be a Deuteronomy 6:4-7 parent. Time is short, and it’s the most precious resource I have.
How do you stay engaged and present with your children?
Other posts from the #7Tools series:
- My Children Belong to God
- The Art of Imitation
- When Your Plans Get Changed (How Our Homeschooling Journey Began)
- Some Thoughts on Intentional Parenting
If you’re interested in joining the 7 Tools for Cultivating Your Child’s Potential book club, click the banner below! It’s not too late to start!