In this day and age, it's a challenge to raise children that will grow to be adults who serve the Lord. Here are a few ideas that might help~
1. Every Christian parent knows this, and we all pray for our kids, but it's important to also pray WITH our kids. Prayer is learned by experiencing it and observing others engaged in it, especially those we trust.
2. Read to your children~ Some would encourage only Bible reading & I agree, that should be the top priority, but don't let it end there. Teach them to develope a love for reading by exposing them to a variety of non-fiction and fiction that envelope the type of life lessons you want them to absorb.
3. Listen to them~None of us have much trouble talking to our kids, but listening takes time and patience. Some kids are chatter boxes, and we slowly learn to tune out much of their talk....some are quiet little introverts that keep to themselves, and if we aren't careful, will pull into a world of their own. Find subjects that interest your child and encourage communication. Discern when they're anxious or troubled and dig a little deeper than you normally would.
4. Make your home a haven for their friends, and have intimate knowledge of the type of homes their friends come from. Encourage the kids to hang out and have fun under your roof...make it a place where they want to spend time.
5. Be aware of what goes into their minds. Monitor their TV, books, music and most of all the computer. Keep it in an area where the kids can be observed and accountable...and keep close tabs on any groups they join or emails they send. Internet predators are a reality and search for kids who's parents aren't attentive.
6. Love your spouse and show it around the kids. The best gift you can give your children is to love your mate. Healthy relationships, love and laughter in the home, will make for an emotionally and spiritually healthy child. Give your kids lots of love...hug them often, no matter how old they are, even if your son towers above you by several inches, he's never too big to hug!
7. Responsibility and discipline will go a long ways to raising mature, well-adjusted kids. Regular chores will help create a sense of belonging and accountability....work along side your kids and teach them strong work ethics~ they'll thank you and so will their employers someday!
8. Encourage their dreams. Set aside your own preconceived ideas of what you'd like your child to do with their lives and listen to what they'd like to do. More than likely it'll shift and change a number of times over the years, so go with the flow. As they get older and more mature, find ways to help them set goals and achieve them, that relate to their dreams for their future.
9. Speak a blessing over your child...Don't be afraid to give positive comments about their character and the good choices they make. Kids will grow into the type of person YOU believe they are.
10. Don't be too proud to apologize to your children if you've made a mistake. Your honesty and humility will gain their respect.