Wow! What an incredible task, this being a parent thing. I know that most of the parenting journey is trial and error, but a gift of God, nevertheless. I know that when my husband and I planned for kids, we had some really big ideas about what it would be like. We followed the plan by the book. I believe that God’s plan always seemed to override. Each day He gives us challenges and joys to this eternal task.
I know with having two girls that the job would be a challenge. There are so many obstacles in the way. Should we let them wear that style, what about TV shows? Each battle or war had rules and boundaries to help us along our way. No matter what the issue, the communication must be there. Since the time when Rachel, who is now thirteen, was around five years of age, we often have family meetings to discuss openly our concerns, questions and general considerations in our home. These meetings have been the best thing that God has guided us to do. No one goes into this lightly. Each child is armed and ready with respect for each other and their issues. I truly believe that this form of communication is crucial in providing an environment for each family member to voice concerns and put things back on track. Just like in a marriage, respecting what others say and how to treat others’ opinions is so important, not only in a home, but even in society. I also take the privilege of this time to encourage just “good old manners”. I often use the phrase, “Remember who you belong to”; of course I mean this two different ways. God should always shine through and by default that trickles down as a reflection of our family. Obviously perfection is never expected or even evident. The goal of living Christ-like is a goal for all of us.
Rachel and I are able to take what we learn and foster our personal relationship. I try not to paint this perfect picture of my teen years. I feel it is so important to be honest and use these experiences to teach and hopefully initiate questions. I make it a point to stay in touch at all levels with Rachel. She and I connect academically, spiritually, physically, and emotionally. It is important to carefully pick these moments. Mother’s have to teach our young ladies the best practices given to us by scripture. We should expect some resistance, so we choose the “battles” and the “wars”. Align your standards by God and experiences. By staying in tune with the “big stuff” of her life, this will help not be a bother, but mentor. I consider it a privilege to be so involved in her life. Our teens really want us in their lives, we just have to find the best way to get in and be effective.
My name is Tammy Harris and I have been married for 20 1/2 years to the man of my dreams. He has been an associate pastor for 15 years and God is truly using Him in His work. I teach first grade and love it. I love scrapbooking, the beach, and of course, chocolate. I have two daughters. Rachel is thirteen and loves her horse “Chance”. Rylie is nine years old and loves any creature that God created. They are the highlights of my life. They are both very bright and beautiful. I love spending time with my friends and singing in the choir. My secret career is to someday be a wedding planner. *Editor’s Note: She DID help direct my wedding and did an incredible job.