“I will make music unto the Lord.”
Yesterday we talked about some rules we made as parents to help with the music in our home.These were areas we wanted to build bridges with our kids instead of a wedge. You probably already have rules in place but if not you are more than welcome to take ours.
1. Set parameters and boundaries; by God’s grace follow them.
Kids have to have space to listen to music within certain guidelines We allowed the music exchange if their was no foul language or explicit sexual content. We didn’t want to condone the language and especially now that they had a new baby sister. We as the parents have the right to change a channel or the song on a CD if we feel that its content is not suitable. We have to go back to God’s word and that becomes the family filter in these circumstances.
2. Be flexible so they come to realize we aren’t ogres or tyrants.
Hopefully we haven’t forgotten what it’s like as a kid. We need to learn to be flexible when it comes to their music. One thing that worked was that we would rotate the music/radio station in ½ hour increments on short trips or the length of a CD on longer trips. On a recent vacation it was easy to watch the CD (which usually had 15-16 songs on them). When it got close I would be ready to switch just like that. It’s easy when the kids aren’t paying attention to let our music go longer and they miss part of their time. But, we remind them it’s their turn. There isn’t a fight and we have a chance to show some grace to them.
3. Ask questions, point out interesting facts along the way (through a song)
The boys say that they do not listen to the lyrics when listening to the song. Hm, I said the same thing when I was younger. Yet, I know that a message is being shared, whether positive or negative, through every song we listen to. When something good is said we try to we be quick to make a positive comment about it. When something negative or empty is said (we pray for tact and wisdom) we make comments that aren’t negative but, thought provoking. The idea here is to open a door instead of closing one. If you like the artist’s voice or their instrumental rifts, tell them. We are looking for ways to build bridges to keep their heart open to the Lord not burn them behind us.
4. Getting our “why’s in order
I look at good music as a good satisfying meal. Our souls get hungry as and one way to feed them is with the living Word of God. So when the boys make comments about why do have to listen to this again or why can’t we change the channel, I try to convey to them that I almost done “eating”. When Christian music is played and God’s word is preached we, can feed our souls on needful stuff. It turns into a chance to express my faith to my kids. Music is much more than a good sound; it feeds or starves the soul. The proof is how you feel when you apply the message that you just heard. I believe that we help them to be responsible with what they put in their hearts and minds.
5. Get the most with the Holy Ghost
We also have to pray for the Holy Spirit to move them. We didn’t understand the importance of feeding our soul until the Lord began to move upon us. If they do not seek the King, we are wasting precious breath. Our job as parents is to, with the Lord’s Spirit, help build a foundation in their lives. We plant seeds, give them a good example, and provide for them good choices to be exposed to. When it all comes down to it, they will not be moved or touched until the Lord works in their hearts. So pray. So pray for the Lord’s divine appointments and that step by step they will see what is really needful and important to listen to.
I hope our little musical adventure helps you when it comes time to change channels on the radio. Each family is different but, we all have the same needs to raise children who love the Lord with all their hearts.