When my two sons, Trent and Troy, were born, I thought they would be a lot alike. More to the point, I thought Jean and I would be able to raise them the same way.
Boy, was I wrong.
Trent and Troy share a lot of the same interests, but spend an afternoon with each of them, and you’ll find out just how different they are. Trent is thoughtful and super-smart. He may be the smartest one in the whole family. But sometimes he struggles in school. Troy is a lot more competitive. He likes to get good grades and to hear praise from his mom and me. He’s more easygoing, too. He’s a roll-with-the-punches kind of guy.
It never fails to amaze me that my boys could be raised together in the same home with the same rules and the same family traditions, and yet have such different ways of expressing their lives. When it comes to parenting, what works for Trent doesn’t always work for Troy.
My guess is, your kids are like that, too. They think differently, act differently, and respond differently to correction. That’s why Proverbs 22:6 encourages moms and dads to raise each of their children according to their own unique personality.
Our children are bouquets, not single flowers. To understand who they are, we need to know them deeply, to understand their likes, their dislikes, their quirks. If you’ll watch closely, all of that will become like a trail of crumbs leading you straight to their hearts.
Julie Lyles Carr is here to help us to do that. She’s a popular speaker and author of the excellent book Raising an Original: Parenting Each Child According to Their Unique God-Given Temperament.
She’ll be discussing parenting strategies that will help you understand how God created your children and to guide them through life according to their uniqueness. Join us for our program “Developing Your Child’s Unique Personality” on your local radio station, online, or on our free phone app.
We also have the “Seven Traits of Effective Parenting” assessment on the Focus website to help you identify your strengths and areas for improvement. It’s free, and there are also recommended resources available if you need further help.