Parents and Freedom and Principles

Parent and Child

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Richard L. Evans - The Spoken Word

"Parents have a duty to govern their children..." said Dr. Lyman Abbott.  "But the object of all good government is to prepare the subject for self-government."

Sometimes parents don't counsel enough, and sometimes children don't listen enough.

Sometimes good advice irritates because it is given the wrong way; but taking good advice, even when it is given in the wrong way, is better than incurring painful penalties and tragic consequences.

Sometimes in youth we may wonder why parents worry.  But there are hazards, and there are situations that are compromising and conducive to unwise conduct.  And it is part of the God-given responsibility of parents to counsel and to be concerned.

Perhaps the real question is:  What are parents for? Certainly they are for more than merely providing shelter and physical sustenance.

Parents are there to guide, to counsel, and by example to show and to live the right way.  And while a parent perhaps should not super-impose his personality or personal pattern upon a child, he certainly must super-impose the principles upon which life is safely and successfully lived.

The responsibility of parents to children and of children to parents is not something to be set aside.  There must be respect and obedience and discipline along with love.  If there is respect at home, there will be respect at school, and respect and obedience for the laws of the land.

This also young people must remember: that they cannot impair their own lives without involving others. No person can hurt himself without hurting his family. No one can find himself in sorrow without bringing sorrow to others besides himself.

Along with freedom, there is safety and assurance in seeking and accepting counsel and in sharing confidences, and we should never resent or impetuously reject what is sincerely intended for our own good.

Freedom should be used for making the best possible choices.  And in all our relationships with loved ones we ought to keep close counsel and confidence with one another.

"All good government" even at home "is to prepare...for self-government."  And how can anyone govern himself well if he hasn't been taught obedience and respect for people and for property and the need for living and keeping the law?