Have you noticed that the millennial generation (20-30 year olds) seems to be full of lazy, or nonexistent workers? There is this overwhelming sense of entitlement and just flat out abuse of the systems that are in place to help people who are really in need. I guess that is a result of living in a me generation. The issue, and what scares and concerns me, is that children are being raised in homes where there is an expectation that the government or someone will step in and provide for them instead of working hard for the things they need.
Instead of ranting about how aggravating it is to see people teaching their children this sense of entitlement I figured I could share 3 ways to instill a good work ethic and attitude that would not only make us proud as parents, but honor and glorify God.
1. Teach Them To Take Up Responsibilities At A Young Age (AKA: Chores)
Yes, kids need to be kids and play and have fun, but they also need to take responsibility for things and learn to be disciplined in some things. Also, the expectations of responsibilities should increase as they get older. For instance chores for a 2-3 year old might be simply putting away their toys when they are done playing, but for a 10 year old chores might be doing their laundry, helping clean the kitchen, and pulling weeds, all in addition to the expectation of cleaning their toys or room. Simple enough, right?
Colossians 3:23 “Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and nor for men,”
2. Teach them About Money and Managing Finances
Now, this doesn’t necessarily mean sitting them down and giving lectures about it, but maybe teaching them as opportunities arise (although you certainly could do lectures or lessons as well). For instance, when you are out grocery shopping explain to them that you have $X and the things you need to buy and have them help you pick which brand to buy accordingly. Show them that in order to get something you have to first spend. Everything comes with a price and it is our job as parents to teach them.
Luke 14: 28 “For which of you, desiring to build a tower, does not first sit down and count the cost, whether he has enough to complete it?”
I love this in regards to teaching about financial responsibility. Not only take everyday experiences and teach them, but also consider giving them an allowance, because it could serve in two ways of teaching. It shows them the exchange system of our world where their employers will exchange goods for a service, when they clean their room, they will receive $5. Then, when they desire the newest game or toy, you can teach them they must save up their money and buy it themselves. This not only teaches them the value of the dollar, but also that hard work pays off. In keeping with God’s word, I believe that we should teach them that before they spend their money on anything, that they would set aside 10% to give to their church.
Malachi 3:10 “Bring the full tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. And thereby put me to the test, says the Lord of hosts, if I will not open the windows of heaven for you and pour down for you a blessing until there is no more need.”
This is the only place in the Bible where He challenges us to test Him, and it is good for us to instill in our children the importance and obedience of tithing.
3. Model the Work Ethic and Attitude We Want Them To Have
As parents, our children look to us and especially when they are young, they look up to us and follow our lead. If we sit on our hands expecting that all things will be handed to us the our kids will do the same. But, if we work hard with a servants heart and an attitude that no job is beneath us, our child will follow the lead. I guarantee you, if I am on my knees scrubbing the floor and allowed my almost two year old in the kitchen with me, he would get down with me and grab a brush, wipe or whatever and stat wiping the floor too. We hold such an important role and we lead by example. So, always be mindful of the little eyes that are upon you and quick to be a helping hand with a smile.
Galatians 5:13 “For you were called to freedom, brothers. Only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another.”
2 Corinthians 9:6-7 “The point is this: whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.”
So, lets break the cycle of entitlement and teach our children how to be wonderful, humble, kind givers who value hard work and bring forth honor and glory to God in all of their actions and deeds.