Nurturing Our Children
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I believe that the most significant role a mother has in the home is to nurture her family, which comes in many forms. According to the dictionary, the word “nurture” means to feed and protect; to support and encourage, as during the period of training or development; to bring up, train, and educate.1
Feed and Protect
Without being nurtured, babies have died! In Health Touch News written by Ben E. Benjamin, PhD there is an article called “The Primary of Human Touch.”2 Within that article, Dr. Benjamin states: “A hundred years ago, about 99% of babies in orphanages in the United States died before they were seven months old.” The babies had their physical needs met and were being fed properly, but they still died. They simply “wasted away in a condition called marasmus.”
He also states: “These babies died from a completely different kind of deprivation: lack of touch. When babies were removed from these large, clean but impersonal institutions to environments where they received physical nurturing along with formula, the marasmus reversed. They gained weight and finally began to thrive. Touch is vital for survival in the very young. Everyday in our nation’s hospitals sick and premature infants, isolated in sterile environments, are given the touch therapy of massage for fifteen minutes, three times a day. Sometimes they are just taken out and simply held and rocked by hospital volunteers. Although these babies are given exactly the same amount of food as others, they grow faster, gain more weight and leave the hospital sooner than their untouched counterparts.”
Proverbs 31 talks about The Wife of Noble Character. She is worth far more than rubies. She works with eager hands. She is like the merchant ships, bringing her food from afar. She gets up while it is still dark. She provides food for her family and portions for her servant girls. She sets about her work vigorously; her arms are strong for her tasks. When it snows, she has no fear for her household; for all of them are clothed in scarlet. She makes coverings for her bed. She is clothed with strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days to come. She speaks with wisdom, and faithful instruction is on her tongue. She watches over the affairs of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness. Her children arise and call her blessed.
Support and Encouragement
In an article entitled “The Importance of Parental Encouragement and Support,” by Bob Roth he says: “As high school students contemplate college and attempt to navigate the challenges of high school life, parents must be clear about their role. The primary role of a high school parent is to consistently offering loving encouragement, support and guidance. Loving parents play a critical role in the development of the young adults who will succeed in college, career and life endeavors.”3
Training and Educating
God instructs us to teach our children what we have learned. Proverbs 22:6 (NIV) says: “Train a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not turn from it.”
In order to successfully train our children, our first job is to be close to God ourselves. Then, we will be a good example to our children. Deuteronomy 6:6-7 (NIV) says: “These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.”
Deuteronomy 6:1-2 (NIV) says: “These are the commands, decrees and laws the Lord your God directed me to teach you to observe in the land that you are crossing the Jordan to possess, so that you, your children and their children after them may fear the Lord your God as long as you live by keeping all his decrees and commands that I give you, and so that you may enjoy long life.”
A mother’s role within the home is extremely significant. 2 Corinthians 9:10-11 (NIV) says: “Now he who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will also supply and increase your store of seed and will enlarge the harvest of your righteousness. You will be made rich in every way.”
1 Taken from this website: http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/nurture?s=t
2 Taken from this website: http://www.benbenjamin.net/pdfs/Issue2.pdf
3 Taken from this website: http://www.selfgrowth.com/articles/The_Importance_Of_Parental_Encouragement_and_Support.html
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