Pearls of Encouragement for Christian Working Moms
October 2008 Edition
Blog/Online Bible Study
CWM Coaching Tips
Article – When are the best times to listen
to your children?
How are you doing? In the United States
and also other parts of the world there seems to be
an economic crisis and people are worrying.
I was talking to a co-worker one day and we decided
it is better to put our faith in God than in the stock
market. Now more than ever we need to trust that God
is in control of our personal lives and our nations.
If you are new to the CWM community,
welcome my dear sisters in Christ. I just wanted to
remind you that previous issues of Pearls of Encouragement
for Christian Working Moms can be found on the archives
page and free articles page of www.christianworkingmom.com.
Do you need a grace pick me up today?
Do you need to rest in the grace of God and how he
sees you? Then, I would heartily recommend you read
on a Swing by Nancy Kennedy. The sub title is
finding rest in the warmth of God’s smile. Become
free in Christ once again.
Blog/Online Bible Study
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Please visit the Open Comment section and answer a
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ways you listen to your children, based on the article
this month. The CWM Online Bible Study can be found
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To find out more go to: http://www.kimberlychastain.com/cwmtips.htm.
Article – When are the best times
to listen to your children?
Do you find yourself talking to your
children more than listening to them? Do you find
that most of your talk to them is about putting something
away or doing homework? Sometimes our lives are so
fast paced it seems our conversations can become that
way as well.
So, when are the best times to listen
to your children? The short answer is when they are
willing to talk. The longer answer is setting the
right atmosphere for good listening to occur. Why
should we listen to our children? Our children have
important things to say and truly listening to someone
says they are important to you.
So, here are some suggestions on best
times to listen to your children:
1. The car is a great place to have a conversation.
One, the children are captive and can’t (hopefully
won’t) jump out of the car. Also, they don’t
have to make direct eye contact so it is easier
for them to talk. Instead of saying, “How
was your day?” say, “What was the best
part of your day or the hardest part of your day?”
I have noticed sometimes my children want to be
quiet in the car and sometimes they are chatter
boxes. Try not to be on the cell phone, but listening
to what your children have to share.
2. Listen to your children when you are putting
them to bed. There is something about when the lights
are out that children start to open up about their
day. Now, I will be honest with you by that time
of the day I’m ready for bed and not a long
conversation, but those are usually the most heartfelt
conversations of the day. All the worries or concerns
come out or just funny events of the day. Be willing
to listen at the end of the day.
3. I have one child that likes to start conversations
in the hall or when I’m leaving a room. I
have purposely stopped what I’m doing, make
eye contact and listen to what he has to say. Conversations
with him tend to be more informal.
4. Some children talk better when they are doing
an activity. Boys, in particular, may talk more
while shooting baskets or throwing a baseball. You
can really have some in-depth conversations. Girls
might want to sit on your bed and have a long conversation
about every detail that happened to them that day.
I know these are generalizations and all children
are different. The key is being available and learning
to listen in the style that fits your child best.
5. Be interested in what your children are interested
in. Right now, I’m learning that the ugly
frog is the size of your hand and the fire belly
toads that we have are the size of a half dollar.
Personally, I prefer smaller toads even though if
you touch them they are poisonous. Believe, if you
had asked me ten or fifteen years ago if I would
become an expert on toads, I would have laughed
at you. But, I’m learning quite a bit from
my son. Take time to learn as much as you can about
your child’s interests and be involved with
6. If it is important enough for you child to talk
about then it is important enough for you to listen,
whether you have the energy or interest. If we don’t
find time to listen to our children, then our children
will find other people to talk to.
7. Ask your children questions when you are listening
to them. Let them be the expert and teach you. When
my children are studying something in school, that
frankly I don’t remember, they love to say,
“You don’t know that?!” I let
them know I knew it at one time, but it is long
gone from my brain.
8. One of Jesus’ favorite ways to teach was
telling stories or parables. So, if we listen to
our children’s stories in some ways we are
modeling how our Savior taught.
9. Children who have been listened to are more willing
to listen to their parents. If children see the
conversation as always one way, you do the talking
and they do the listening; they quickly lose respect
10. Listening to our children is a gift we can give
them to show our love for them. Doesn’t our
Heavenly Father listen to us anytime, anywhere?
We should model that for our children.
Is there a perfect time to listen to
your children? Probably not. You have to know your
child’s personality and yours as well. The most
important thing is that you are willing to listen
and available. Some of my most precious conversations
with my children have been when they share their hearts
with me and what is going on in their lives; it is
truly a gift. One final suggestion, a good way to
get to the heart of what is going on in your child’s
lives is to ask, “How can I pray for you?”
You will be surprised at what you hear. Then, follow
through and pray for your child.
May we learn to be as good a listener
as our Heavenly Father.
Till next time,
Kimberly M. Chastain