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October 3, 2013
Desire and Temptation
We all wish our children would desire the right things in life and avoid tempting situations. Desires reside in the heart and can be good or bad. Psalm 37:4 tells us “Delight yourself in the Lord and he will give you the desires of your heart.” Knowing the difference between a healthy desire and a temptation, however, can be a challenge at times, especially for kids.
A great tool in this area is your own transparency. You encounter desires and temptations every day. By talking with your children about how you deal with those situations, you can provide your kids with examples that will help them learn what to do with their own desires and temptations.
Twelve-year-old Sean asked his mom why she didn’t get angry when she was cut off on the road, giving Mom a perfect opportunity to talk about how she lets it go so she doesn’t have to harbor the anger. Mom knew that Sean needed that message because he’d been treated unfairly at school and was tempted to act out his own anger. Sean listened and pondered what his mom said. Mom watched the wheels turn in his head and knew she had just connected somewhere deep inside her son.
Don’t miss the opportunities provided by day-to-day life to point out to your children appropriate ways to deal with desires. Explain to your kids why you pursue some desires and let others go, and help your children see how those principles apply to their own lives as well. Your transparency can be a valuable guide as your children wrestle with desires.
This parenting tip comes from the the book, Parenting is Heart Work by Dr. Scott Turansky and Joanne Miller, RN, BSN.