06 Mar The 5 Love Languages of Children
Many couples have read or at least heard of the popular book “The 5 Love Languages.” It’s a wonderful eye-opener to learning that your spouse (and you) have a particular language and dialect through which love is spoken, heard or felt. The book provokes you as the reader to engage in discovering your spouse’s love language. It also challenges you to rely on God to move beyond your own comfort, nature and need to unconditionally demonstrate love in a way your spouse can understand.
“The Five Love Languages of Children” is similar in its goal; however, I sadly found myself struggling with mastering the main premise of this book. Children’s desire and need for unconditional love. It seems like such a simple, godly concept. Yet as a parent, I struggle. I struggle with the seasons of teaching and disciplining through my children’s disobedience, some of which seems blatant and defiant. I struggle through the seasons of irresponsibility and the excuses that accompany it.
But God’s mercies are new every morning. (Lamentations 3:22-23)
My mercies? Not so much. This book challenged my character and my heart. My children do not deserve the demonstration of love only when they are performing to my standard. On the contrary—they especially deserve demonstrations of love when they are not performing to my standards of behavior. Because as parents, who are the introduction to God’s nature and unconditional, merciful love to our children, we have a weighty responsibility. A responsibility to reflect His grace, mercy and love. A lesson we never want our children to learn is that they have to ‘work’ or ‘strive’ to receive the Father’s love.
So, this book will help you discover your child’s language of love. Prayerfully, it will also challenge you in the areas of forgiveness, grudges and expectations. When a child’s love language is difficult to speak, and their behavior is difficult to endure, you find yourself in a bit of quandary. This is where we as parents have to intentionally rely on God and His word.
My children will not always live up to my expectations. Nevertheless, they are always worthy of unconditional love and acceptance.
Redeemer Church Children’s Ministry Director