“The deepest joys and blessings in life are associated with family, parenthood, and sacrifice.” President Benson
Parenting is such a sacred privilege and opportunity, and I cannot wait for the days of motherhood with my children and parenting alongside my husband.
Parenting is a way for us to partner with our Heavenly Father to raise His children. Being a parent helps us to become more like Him, and more like the Savior.
As we parent, we are able to learn and develop more of Christ’s attributes- like charity, faith, patience, diligence, and humility.
God knew that the best way for parents and children to return home to Him was in a family with two parents who love their children unconditionally. God is the absolute best example of parenting.
I feel there is so much to learn about how we should parent by looking at the way that Heavenly Father parents us:
First off, He loves us. Unconditionally and no matter what, He always loves us.
Secondly, He does give us rules (called commandments).
I think it is important to see that all of the rules He gives are for our safety, protection, and benefit. There is a reason for each commandment, and none of them are for any selfish reason on His part. They are all for our benefit and future success. He doesn’t make us live in a certain way, or make certain choices. Rather, He encourages us to live in a way that He knows will be the safest and happiest way for us to live. He lets us learn from the consequences from our mistakes, and loves us through them all. He forgives us when we come back.
Learning about the needs children have and how to help them meet those needs will be so helpful when I someday have children. When children are seeking for attention, what they really need is contact and belonging. As the parent, you can teach them to contribute to a cause and offer them physical contact freely. Another need children have is power, they might show this by acting out in rebellion or by trying to control others. Parents can help children find a sense of power by giving them responsibilities, letting them make their own choices, and receive the consequences of those choices. Protection is a need that children have; in search for this protection they might seem to be seeking revenge. What they need from the parent is both assertiveness (structure and plainness) and also forgiveness (to know they are loved and safe). Some children might seem to be taking undo risks. This is showing their need to be challenged. As a parent, you can help them by encouraging and assisting them to develop new skills. The final need we talked about in class was withdrawal. Sometimes children might seem like there are very avoidant, let them take a break (a breather). I think knowing what children need, how those needs come out in their actions, and knowing how to meet their needs will be so beneficial as a parent.
As a parent, I want to strive for a heavenly parenting style by trying to love my children unconditionally, setting rules and boundaries that have a purpose all for them (keeping my children safe, happy, and healthy), and letting them choose. I know that parenting cannot be an easy job, but as we seek the Lord’s help and inspiration and look to His example, He will send us help and angels- they are HIS children, too, after all.