As your kids grow, they are changing physically, spiritually and emotionally. These changes are hard to adapt to as a parent if we are not equipped. They are also challenging if we fail to realize that our strategies for parenting must change depending on their stage of life.
Our core values as a family and principles of our home never change but the tactics of execution may need adjustment. Here is some oversimplified exploration of age differences and questions inside the hearts of your children.
Our kids are full of questions throughout life. As they change and develop, these questions change. As parents, if we know the questions in the hearts of our kids, we can help the find answers.
Questions Boys and Girls Are Asking
First, let’s talk about the differences between questions in boys and girls. These are the BIG questions that are in the hearts of our kids that will never change. These are the questions that they are born with inside their hearts.
Boys are asking “Do I have what it takes?”
No one taught my son to pick up a stick and use it as a sword. No one told my son to build a bigger ramp for his bike. He is exploring and pressing the limits by challenging himself and asking if he has what it takes. As he grows this question remains the same. He will seek fulfillment in other things if he doesn’t understand that God already approves of him. He is made in the image of God and he is a son of God. As a parent, we can help our boys by pointing to the approval from above, not in things of this earth.
Girls are asking “Do you see me?”
My daughter loves to dress up and yearns for my eyes and approval. That is within her heart. She wants to be seen and cared for. As she grows this question remains the same. She will seek fulfillment in other things if she doesn’t understand that the Creator of the universe sees her and loves her so much. She is made in the image of God and is a daughter of God. As parents, we can help our girls by reminding her that she is seen by the Lord and his eyes are more important than anyone else in this world.
These basic questions are in the hearts of our boys and girls depending on their developmental stages. Combining the big questions that they were born with and the developmental questions that come over time, we can help lead our kids to become healthy adults.