My daughter was frustrated about something at school and I wanted to solve it for her. But I stopped myself (yey mom!). I showed her empathy and told her that that is hard. Then I asked her one of the most powerful questions we can ask our kids:
“What are you going to do about it?”
This simple question communicates:
I believe in you.
You’re smart enough and capable enough to solve this.
You can think for yourself.
It doesn’t mean we can’t guide them and offer wisdom as that is one of our big roles as parents, but it does mean that as our kids get older, we should be encouraging them to do the thinking more and more for themselves and not solving every issue for them.
This will grow their confidence so much and help them think more for themselves when the crowd is trying to get them to do the wrong thing.
As our kids get older, we want them to be able to know how to solve problems and listen to their own voice. As the book, “Parenting with Love and Logic” says, if kids only listen to their parent’s voice as they grow up with solving problems and not their own, when they get older and the voice they listen to shifts from their parent’s to their friend’s, they will be more likely to listen to their friend’s voice.
But, if they are used to making decisions and thinking for themselves, when the crowd is running one way, they will be more likely to listen to their own voice, make their own decisions, and have the confidence to do what they think is right and best, with God guiding them along the way.
Jesus Himself asked about 80 questions just in the book of Luke alone. Let’s mimic His example and ask our kids questions now so they will learn to confidently make their own decisions as they grow up and not just follow the crowd.