Dr James Dobson Daily Devotional for Parents

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Dr. Dobson's Parenting Devotional - July 18

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Changing with the Times

Blessed is the man…who gains understanding.
Proverbs 3:13

The summer after I graduated from high school, I (JCD) traveled fifteen hundred miles from home and entered a college in California. I will never forget the exhilarating feeling of freedom that swept over me. I felt accountable for my life and did not have to explain my actions to anyone. The following December, my parents and I met for Christmas vacation at the home of relatives. Suddenly, I found myself in conflict with my mother. She was responding as she had when I was still in high school, asking when I would be coming in at night, urging me to drive safely, and watching what I ate. My mother had failed to notice that I had changed, and I was eager for her to get with the program.

In a similar way, when Mary and Joseph discovered that their twelve-year-old, Jesus, was not with their party on its way out of Jerusalem, they did not know where to look for Him. They eventually found Him in the temple courts, listening and asking questions. They didn’t realize how far Jesus had grown in comprehending His unique relationship with His heavenly Father: “Didn’t you know I had to be in my Father’s house?” (Luke 2:41–50).

Scripture instructs us to “walk in the way of understanding” (Proverbs 9:6). When we seek to understand and adapt to the changes in our children, we’ll find we appreciate them all the more—and vice versa.

Before you say good night…

  • How have your children changed in the last few months?
  • Are you treating them with new “understanding” as a result?

Heavenly Father, we ask You to guide our relationships with our children. Help us to recognize their growth and maturity and to encourage them even as they change to draw nearer to You. Thank You for showing us how to “walk in the way of understanding.” Amen.

Listen to today's broadcast of Dr. James Dobson's Family Talk at OnePlace.com.  For more from Dr. Dobson, visit the resource center at drjamesdobson.org.

This devotional is taken from Night Light for Parents. Copyright © 2000 by James Dobson, Inc. All rights reserved. Used with permission.

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