Earlier I introduced Gregg Harris’ “attachment” principle for doing the many things that are important in our kids’ Christian upbringing. (Read Attaching Important Things To Your Schedule here.)
Today I want to introduce another paradigm that has kept us going in all of the myriad Christian training endeavors: If something is important to you, you will do it more often than you do not.
Simple, really. But it has kept us going when we felt defeated, overwhelmed, or unsuccessful in our parenting. No matter what was happening, we tried to follow that principle. When one of us got discouraged, the other would remind the first that we were, indeed, doing what we were supposed to be doing.
I haven’t done afternoon story time for two days in a row with Kara’s colic. Ray’s answer? All that matters is that you do it more often than you don’t. And I knew that it was true. I am not perfect. Managing a houseful of preschoolers certainly made perfection on a daily basis out of the question!
However, I knew in my heart of hearts what I wanted our home to be. I knew what I wanted my day to look like (and what it needed to look like in order to accomplish all that we wanted to accomplish).
We knew what we wanted in our children’s Christian upbringing. And we knew that as long as we persevered and did those important things “more often than not,” we could make it.
Make that your goal for new disciplines in your family—that if you plan to do devotions every school morning during breakfast, and you make it three of the five—you have done it “more often than not.”
If you want to read aloud to your tweens before bed during the week, and you read three out of the five weeknight bedtimes, you have done it—“more often than not.” And you are well on your way to success in carrying out the things that are important to you in your Christian parenting.
Raising children for the Lord is not a sprint. It is a marathon, or if you are married, a life-long relay. Running fast and hard at the beginning is not what will get you to the finish line. Slow and steady is what will get you there. And reading, praying, singing, talking, choring, playing, teaching, training, etc. “more often than not” will help you cross that finish line someday knowing that have done what you were supposed to do—without regrets for all of the “priorities” that never truly were priorities but just unfulfilled wishes.
How could the “more often than not” principle help you in your parenting? Would it bring freedom? Could it bring more consistency than you get with trying for perfection?