BY DR. ROBERT E. FOWLER
How do we bring out the best in children? By adhering to the five foundations of fathering, a set of important principles that have been provided to us by God.
1. If you’re going to help change somebody, help bring out the best in them and accept their uniqueness. This is the starting point. Recognizing and valuing their individuality. Their uniqueness as a person. You have to start with accepting them before you can help them grow. Every child — indeed, every person — is unique. Everyone is different, everyone is special.
2. Understand their style. In other words, understand their temperament, personality and the way they should go. Your goal is not to mold kids into your image. Your goal is to help them discover what God made them to be.
3. Affirm their value. Why is it so important to affirm people’s value? Because everyone is starving for affirmation. I’ve met thousands of people, and never encountered a single one who doesn’t need affirmation. We all seek it in many different ways but everybody is looking for the same thing. Why is it important to affirm their value? Because God values every one of us.
4. Trust them with responsibility. The fourth key to great parenting or fathering is to trust children with responsibility. Nothing brings out the best any faster than having somebody trust and believe in you.
5. Correct without condemning. We all need correction at times. None of us are perfect. I know there’s some experts out there today who say, “You should never discipline your kids. You should sort of let them go…” Look at what the Bible says about this. If you don’t disciple — correct — your kids, you are setting them up for failure, and don’t really love them.