Parents just don't understand.
In the Spring of 1988 Will Smith (the rapper now known as the actor) released a song that peaked at #12 on the Billboard Hot 100 called "Parents just don't understand". It was a popular song because it embodied the thoughts and feelings of most teenagers regarding their relationship with their parents. Now twenty-three years later, the saying is still true. I don't believe as parents we understand how our lifestyle choices influence our children.
Ford Motor company conducted a survey on teenage driving. Here is a quote from the summary section. “More than three quarters of ‘tweens and 66 percent of teens say they are heavily influenced by their parents driving behavior; 80 percent see their parents engage in risky driving as they are looking to them as role models.”
I believe the influence factor is not only true in driving but is also true in all other areas of life. Parental behavior and choices influence the choices and behavioral patterns of children and teens more than we realize. This was definitely true in Nehemiah's time. Nehemiah 13 highlights how the Israelites deviated from their commitments to God. v. 23-24 specifically focuses on how they chose to intermarry with those who would not surrender to God as the only true and living God. The adults who intermarried had children. Half of their children did not speak the language of the Jews but instead the language of the people of the land. The parental choice to do what pleased them as parents instead of doing what pleased God influenced their children. Now a new generation is growing up in Jerusalem who are disconnected from the language but more importantly the culture and covenant relationship with the true and living God. Nehemiah addressed this issue with the parents and the children. Even when the parents didn't understand their influence Nehemiah knew somebody had to remind the people of God of the standards of God.
Choose to have a positive influence on your children this Summer. Don't allow the TV, video games, mobile phones or neighborhood friends to influence your children more than you do. You have more influence than you realize.
Created almost 3 years ago