I love the words of the author of Ecclesiastes, “Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their labor. For if they fall, one will lift up his companion. But woe to him who is alone when he falls, for he has no on to help him up” (Ecclesiastes 4:9-10).
I believe that in His divine wisdom, God knew that to raise children in the reverential fear of His Word, there needed to be two people. With my husband, we have been married for five years and we can say that theses have been years of blessing. In the beginning of our marriage, we said we would wait three years to have children, yet God’s plans are greater than ours. Noah, our firstborn, arrived one month after our first year of marriage, a little sooner than we had expected.
With the arrival of our children, we have learned to work as a team with my husband. I think this has been a great blessing because the responsibility hasn’t been put on just one person. This is why I want to share with you three principles that have helped us.
- We discipline together
As a couple, we got into agreement in certain parameters we wanted to establish in our home. Discipline is ineffective if one of the parents is not firm in moments where correction is needed. Our children know that what dad says is also what mom says, and what mom says will be backed up by dad. When both parents are firm and in agreement, discipline will be much more effective.
- We help out in different ways
For example, Rich generally has to be at church early for soundcheck and he knows that getting two boys under four years old demands a lot of work. Before he leaves, he helps me get the diaper bag ready, prepares Noah’s food, and then goes to church. These small details are a big help. In the mornings, Rich takes Noah to school (40 minute drive) and I pick him up in the afternoon. In doing this, we each put in our part because we understand that the responsibility belongs to both of us. I think that it is important for the children to see that both parents are involved in their activities.
- We express love and affection.
The way the husband treats the wife speaks much louder than a thousand words. It is the model the children will follow and many times it is the way they will treat their siblings. It is important that in the home, the children do not become the center of attention. The couple needs time to nourish their relationship; time alone without their kids to their grow in their communication and step out of the daily routine. This will let the parents recharge and continue to be an example for their kids.
This was something I personally experienced at 24 years old, when I was living with my parents. I have always been impacted by the way they nourished their friendship daily as a married couple. They would sit down at the end of the day, or in the morning to drink a cup of coffee together, and just talked and shared time together. Their ationship has taken each of us daughters today, to desire a marriage like the one we saw growing up. A marriage where respect and harmony are enjoyed daily. Today, we can say that we owe the majority of our home and family to our parents who determined to take care of their own marriage and be an example with their actions. For this, I will be eternally grateful.
It is possible to raise up families in God! God is a God of three generations and when He brings two people together, He is not just thinking in the two of them, but in their future generations.