The question, “What’s your goal?” was repeated many times in our household.  We asked our kids that question and we also asked each other.

 “My math teacher is a perfectionist and she makes me crazy.  Why do I have to put the decimal point right on the line?”

“What’s your goal?”

“To learn this math stuff and to get a good grade.”

“So? What about the decimal point?”

“I guess I’ll put it right on the line.”

Asking and answering the question “What’s your goal?” is a big help in determining appropriate behavior.

As parents we were very intentional in establishing goals as we raised our three sons.   We had goals for ourselves in parenting and also goals for our sons.

One very important note:  If you are raising a strong-willed child, do not share your goals with your son or daughter.  Knowing the goal might be all it takes to encourage a strong-willed child to sabotage the effort at every turn.

Here is a sample of the long-range goals we set for our sons.  It was our hope that as soon as possible (and definitely before our 18-years of “hands-on” parenting was complete) they would:

•  Learn to love the Lord and realize the fullness of God’s love.
•  Temper the negative aspects of their personalities.
•  Capitalize on the pluses of their nature.
•  Cooperate and respond to the leadership of others when it was in line with the Word of God.
•  Help others understand God’s grace and truth.
•  Become a responsible adult with godly character.

We would encourage you to think about the long-term goals you have for all your children and consistently ask yourself the question, “What is my goal?” as you parent.  This will help you keep your focus on the target.  You may not hit the bulls-eye each time, but you’ll be facing the right wall!

 What are your goals when it comes to raising your children? 

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