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Sticks and Stones by Gregory Bland

Dec 8th, 2010 | By | Category: Parent Coaching - Guest Posts

Sticks and stones may break my bones, and your words will always shape me.  No doubt you understand the power of words and the influence they have within our lives.  Most of us can think of someone who has brought out our best because of the words they used which communicated their belief in us.  Scripture is true, “The power of life and death are within the tongue.”  As parents we have the wonderful opportunity to continually see the best in our children and speak words of health into their lives.

The impact of our words is multiplied when we focus upon our children’s character as opposed to simply their performance.  Focusing upon their performance can subtly communicate a conditional love based upon what they do as opposed to who they are.  A couple of helpful questions to ask ourselves are, “What is God shaping within their character?”  And, “What can I say that will affirm this character quality within them?” 

We do not have to look any further than Jesus interaction with Simon to recognize this principle in action.   In speaking with Simon Jesus could have focused on many things.  What he did and didn’t accomplish, his shortcomings, that he would one day be a great speaker, communicator, evangelist and church planter.  Instead, Jesus saw something much more important than what he would accomplish and do.  Jesus recognized then verbalized a character quality he saw within Simon and said, “You are Simon son of John, but you will be called Peter,” which means “You are a rock!”  (See John 1:42)  

Jesus’ focus was upon character and I wonder what Peter thought when he heard these words from Jesus.  “Who me?”  “You’ve got to be kidding me, I am the furthest thing from a rock.”  “I am not sure who you’re looking at Jesus but it can’t be me!”  Or, “Jesus, those words stir something within me, there is just something about what you said, and I really want to live up to that!”  

 Speaking to our children’s character in this way moves our focus away from performance and places it where it should be, upon their character.  This helps them begin seeing themselves as God sees them and who knows, they may even think to themselves, “Mom, Dad, those words stir something within me, there is just something about what you said, and I really want to live up to that!”   

This week can I challenge you to take notice what character qualities are developing within your child and when you have identified them, take some time to affirm this with your words and step back and observe how your child responds? 

Until next time, enjoy your journey into Parent Coaching.

Your friend and pro-active parent coach.

*  Image copyright unknown, if copyright violated please let me know and I will remove immediately.   

*Gregory and Lynn Bland reside in Pleasantville, Nova Scotia, Canada and are actively coaching, writing and developing a course to assist parents in learning the heart, skills and disciplines of Pro-Active Parent Coaching.  Additionally they are providing interim pastoral care for the Maritime District of the PAOC.  For more information check out Pro-ActiveParentCoaching or write to

Copyright 2010 Gregory Bland | Pro-ActiveParentCoaching | Nova Scotia | Canada |

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