Now hold it right there if you think this is going to be a “why can’t we all just get along?” article. Its not.
I believe that in tolerance our society has created intolerance. We are so tolerant of others point of view that the focused, the “narrow minded,” if you will, have become the ones who are wrong. Because openmindedness is apparently a virtue.
Full disclosure folks: I am narrow minded. And I won’t apologize for it.
I have simple goals. To serve God, do right, love my neighbor as myself, and show unconditional love, as Christ did. I’m not perfect, I fail CONSTANTLY in these goals. But the point in pursuing them, is eventually getting them. I don’t carry signs that say terrible things at people’s funerals, I don’t tote weapons to the local abortionists, and I most definitely don’t scream things at the people going in. This all being said, I have one focus, and one focus only, Jesus Christ. There are alot of things I enjoy, I do, and I like. (I run, I like wine, I love all kinds of music. Joan Jett, Queen, Reliant K, Regina Spektor, DCtalk, Newsboys, The Who. I love to watch The Office, Project Runway, Saturday Night Live, I also enjoy listening to a good sermon by James MacDonald. I love to read Jane Austen and Shakespeare.)
How does this relate to parenting? Well, I parent By The Book. My parenting decisions are informed by my focus (or narrow mindedness) on the Bible. I think my children ought to be raised as the Bible dictates.
2 Timothy 3:16-17
“All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work.”
I understand that every family is different, every child is different, and that in applying principles and parenting choices, there is flexibility in how it plays out, person to person. I may be “narrow minded” But I’m not legalistic. I don’t expect everyone to do things like I do. In fact, I appreciate the diversity that is natural in people. Please don’t take away from this post that I expect everyone to follow me. I am not the authority, God is. I’m exploring parenting just as any other parent is.
To get to the point: We all have our own focus. We are all “narrow minded.” We all know what we believe, and we all make choices in parenting. This is why it is dangerous to assume, as many do “if she would just parent like me, listen to me, her kids would be so much better.”
They won’t. She knows what she’s doing, or maybe she doesn’t, but it is none of our business, or anybody else’s to interfere in reasonable parenting decisions. We focus so much on the little details in parenting, the details that really don’t matter. If another parent chooses a school you don’t approve of, feeds their child a food you don’t approve of, lets their child participate in activities you don’t approve of, so what?
Train up a child in the way he should go, Even when he is old he will not depart from it.