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Parents must be involved in their children’s life at every level

From the writings of the Rev. Billy Graham
Dear Rev. Graham: Our teenagers are obsessed with the internet. We don’t understand much of it so they say we shouldn’t forbid them to do something that we don’t understand. Every dime they’re given is spent on this type of entertainment. Are we wrong to be concerned about things that can be harmful? — R.C.
Dear R.C.: Much of the entertainment the world offers can be harmful. Some psychologists have cautioned that video games and other similar things can influence young people, even adults, in a negative way. Much of it is violent and immoral and parents shouldn’t ignore things that twist and corrupt the mind.
Parents must be involved in their children’s life at every level, opening up lines of communication. Frank talk with children is important, encouraging them to share things they’re interested in. This gives opportunity to teach the principles of life. Some teens never hear parental guidance about spending money and making wise choices. It’s impossible to guide young people if no time is spent in developing a relationship. Children learn by watching, and what they learn in the midst of home life becomes foundational, not only in the developing years but later on when children eventually have families of their own.
The best place to start is with the Word of God — the Bible — the guidebook for life. The Lord desires that parents know Him, understand His truth, and follow Him obediently. When parents put their faith in Almighty God, they have taken the first and most important step in raising their children, encouraging them, also, to put Christ first.
Parents who love their children must show it by spending time with them with watchful eyes and listening ears. Parents want the best for children but children are not equipped to know what the best is. Teen years are difficult and no one said parenting is easy, but there’s great privilege in raising children to love God and directing them to a life that puts Christ first.
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(This column is based on the words and writings of the late Rev. Billy Graham.)