The images that shape a child’s identity is everywhere you turn. From cartoons, television, music, radio, video games, and school, our kids are surrounded by the images this world idolizes. As this world continues to evolve, the lack of appropriate filters on the images of what our children see everyday continues to grow. Our girls and boys gain examples on how they should act and dress from what they see portrayed everyday. For girls, the dominant expressions of less and tighter clothing are ideal for them, and for boys, baggy clothes and heels are appropriate. Children see broken marriages, mom and dad dating many people, mom and dad having live in boyfriends or girlfriends, same sex dating, toxic relationships, abusive relationships, etc.. This sends a message to our children that when they are older, the examples we have portrayed are what they have to look forward to or be attracted to in a mate.
This is nothing new, because we see in the bible similar behaviors of generations of people idolizing everything but our Lord Jesus Christ. From golden calves to God having to destroy Sodom and Gomorrah for their continuous sins. As parents, we have the responsibility of protecting our children. As a parent, how do you protect your child? Do you pay attention to how you treat others in front of them, how you dress, what you listen and watch, and the people you allow into their life? In this flawed and dangerous world, do you provide a loving safe and nurturing environment for your child to take refuge? Where do they go to understand who they are? When they come home after seeing the bad influences of this world, do they come home and experience the same type of influence?
As a parent, we must realize that we can control our home environment. We do not have to accept or bring in worldly behavior to our home. We have future men and women leaders that we are raising, and their image of themselves starts at home. We can either positively shape their image of themselves or reinforce the negative influences that they experience outside and sometimes inside of the home. As a child, I can remember that home was the place I could always retreat to after I felt sad, insecure, or unsure about myself due to what my peers or family members would say about me. As a parent, our children want to come home and receive direction on how to deal with situations they are confronted with daily. If you just spend about 15 minutes a day just asking them about their day and how they feel, you will be surprised at their response. Trust me, Try it! Our children are smart and very intuitive. Their responses will cause you to evaluate the influence you have in your children’s lives, either positive or negative. Either way, it shapes the Image of your child for years to come.