From the very beginning, when we tucked our little son into bed at night, his dad and I reminded him that God had designed him a specific way for a specific purpose.
Our oldest son loved planes and the concept of flight from his earliest memories. This son’s interest were evident very early, and we focused on feeding him intellectually and hands on in this area. His choice of books including these 1st-2nd grade readers reflected that interest.
I read from Richard Scary’s Best Word Book Ever to this son for hours when I was on bed-rest carrying twins, but it was the page on airplanes that fired up his imagination in a big way!
Help For Your Son:
Focus on His Interests in Homeschool
The first time I stooped down beside our toddler son and pointed up into the sky to announce the approach of a two-seater airplane, I knew there was a connection made. I could feel his excitement! He was shivering with joy, and his eyes never left the sound of the motor until it was far out of sight. His little hand tightened on mine, and he was full of questions.
As we began more directed homeschooling, much of what we added in the way of writing and journaling encompassed everything planes, pilots, fighter jets, rockets, missiles, and astronauts.
What continued through the years was a deepening interest in flight in general, but also in astronomy, the sciences, and engineering.
I thought little of what it might mean for him (or for me) to actually fly one day! It was too far down the road.
You’ve heard it said, “Be careful what tastes and affections you develop in your children.” It is so true! We as parents must deal with the eventualities of our choices. We are the gate-keepers.
Be Alert At the Library
While books seem innocent at the younger ages (and the summer reading programs at the library sound appealing), I would caution all parents to be completely aware of the content of anything from your local library or a neighbor’s home, for that matter. I still feel sick that a very dear friend’s son was sucked into porn at the age of 8 (really!) via books which were verbally graphic which caused him to seek it out.
Most of the garbage out there can take a young man off track from the very thing he really has a passion for!
I recommend being proactive and providing your own great books.
Books Unhealthy For Children- Recent Newbery, Caldecott, YA
Children will ask for more if a book is well-chosen.
Love of reading is usually developed early and will be profitable in using up lots of trouble-making free-time. Start collecting books now and tailor your purchases to winsomely draw your child into exciting, wholesome wonderment. We avoided fantasy in the younger years for a number of reasons, preferring autobiographies, living history, character-building, and nature stories.
We wanted our boys to take dominion, to become men ‘of steel and of velvet’, and yet to become men of good character and honor.
Have them read books with strong male characters doing unpredictable things. A few examples are:
My Side of the Mountain Trilogy
Mark Twain, Ralph Moody, Jules Verne, and GA Henty write great adventure books for boys!
It has been exciting to see how our 20-year-old son has retained a love of reading, and his tastes definitely continue to reflect that early diet of aviation, science, history, and current events.
More Book Resources for boys and girls
- Character-Building Book Resources For Raising Younger Boys
- 15 Proven Ways To Increase The Attention Span Of Boys
- 100+ Books To Fight Back the Culture: Preschool Thru Grade 12
Intentionally Let Go of Your Son
So Mothers, with the help of your husbands, intentionally guide your son in his young years to his interests, committing them to the Lord, and help your son to guard his heart until he takes his faith seriously and governs himself.
This is not done overnight.
Later, you must gradually open your hand to hold him more and more loosely. Your son can and will fly upon wings like an eagle. If held onto too tightly, he will either resent and despise you or become weak and unable to lead his own family someday (or both). I have had to walk these last years on my knees and resign my ideas as the Lord has revealed His!
Now our son has finished his instrument rating and is close to obtaining his commercial hours and earning his college degree. While I still have anxious moments (some days he is flies in the clouds, following only the instruments and tower contact), I pray he is remaining grounded in the Word – and that’s all that matters.
Thought he is by no means a perfect person, it is a joy to be his mom!
This song played on the radio the morning he soloed. He was 16. It was a very special day: 7-07-2007!
“I pray that God will fill your heart with dreams,
And that faith gives you the courage
To dare to do great things.
I’m here for you whatever this life brings.
So let my love give you roots
And help you find your wings.
“It’s not living if you don’t reach for the sky
I’ll have tears as you take off
But I’ll cheer you as you fly
PS: In the same way, you raise your daughter who needs more courage, and abilities to uphold morals and standards, and to honor God and keep faith strong. No difference. Both girls and boys need to learn these things.
Brain Starvation: Could Boys Be Suffering?
Boys Think, See, Hear & Process Very Differently Than Girls
Boys Are Moldable: Raising Them To Be Competent, Hard-Working & Masculine
“So let my love give you roots and help you find your wings.” – Mark Harris
“When I was a boy in my father’s house, still tender, and an only child of my mother, he taught me and said, “Lay hold of my words with all your heart; keep my commands and you will live. Get wisdom, get understanding; do not forget my words or swerve from them. Do not forsake wisdom, and she will protect you; love her, and she will watch over you.” ~Proverbs 1: 3-6
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Thank you for your encouragement. As the mom of three small boys, I am very concerned about strengthening and developing my boys’ character. I have some great old books that tell stories of the heroes of early America. I have been waiting for them to be old enough to read them with them. I have to admit they have been reading a lot of fluff, but it’s time to get them reading some better literature. My two oldest (twins, age 6) are ready!
Hi Jacque. Maybe when he gets his CFI he can teach Gabe! Loved this post! The movies we let them watch make an impact also. Many years ago we took Gabe to see “End of the Spear.” Now it is a bit nerve-wracking when he reminds me that he could die while on the mission field. Letting go IS hard! Yes, be careful what tastes you develop. Reading lots of missionary stories to them could just draw them to the mission field. But if that’s what God calls them to…Blessings, dear.
Hi, Barb! Does Gabe want to fly, too? How old is he now? You never know what God may choose to do! “Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell.” Matthew 10: 28
Yep, has wanted to fly since he was 8. Really wish he’d had a chance to chat with your son when you all were at CHC. Perhaps in Mexico?! 🙂 He is 17, and resources have not been available for him to start flight yet. God has not opened that door, though he is anxious. He’ll start A&P next year in Rockford. We continue to pray for God to open doors. HE knows the plan, even if we don’t.
Such a blessed reminder that our children do not belong to us…we have let go of our two older daughters. Kirsten graduated last May and moved to CT to take a job. She is alone and away from everything that she ever knew, but she is growing and blossoming in ways she never would have if she stayed here. Johanna, graduated this May and two days after graduating, she got married! 🙂 Two very different circumstances, but both require us to trust the Lord. It is actually exciting to see what the Lord does when we let go. 🙂
I also wanted to let you know that you have won the set of hand-crafted notecards in the “Happy Summer Giveaway”! Congratulations!!
Here is my email: homemanager(at)gmail(dot)com
send me you mailing info and I will get the cards out to you! Please feel free to take advantage of the coupon code for 20% off a purchase in my shop as well! (it is on my announcement post) 🙂
We have Richard Scarry’s “Best Word Book Ever,” too! Edmund loves it! He enjoys airplanes but also cars, fire engines, trains, trucks — anything that moves. 🙂 I enjoyed reading about your perspective from further down the road of motherhood… thanks for the wisdom.
Lovely post and wise words! I also have fond memories of reading to a little one while on bed rest with a complicated pregnancy.
What a wonderful and inspiring post! You are truly living out your calling – (if I am correct on this) – that your heart is for encouraging young mothers in this journey. I am in the ‘trenches’ of raising four young daughters. Your book suggestions are amazing (my oldest now wants to read that book series by Jeff Barth!). I struggle with confidence as I look to the years ahead…. (will I have what it takes to teach them the higher levels of learning??) but I have to leave those days to God and his provision. Thank you for putting your heart and life out here for us to learn from!!
This post made me cry! I have 3 kiddos, twins boys age 6 and a 2 year old girl. I understand the complexities of raising children.
It is so touching to see this picture of you reading to him! Plus, looking into the future by what topics interest my sons is so interesting.!! I am going to be keeping my eye out on books we bring in the home. I look forward to everyday. Literally! Everyday with toddlers and youngsters is so different but somehow the same!
Thanks for the post I know I will love catching up on your blog!
~ jess the balanced libra
come visit me and my blog please!
What an absolute blessing to see your son’s love of airplanes develop into something amazing! Thanks so much for linking up.
Musings of a Minister's Wife
Another beautiful post. My heart aches for my young, moldable son. He is home with me all day since we homeschool and I am so very, very aware of the impact I have on him.
Melinda, I will be in prayer that you and I will in faith each day give all our energies to reflecting the love of Christ into our family: loving our husbands, cultivating a quiet and gentle spirit. All thing are possible with God!!
Oh, that song. It makes me sob. 🙂 Sometimes I can’t believe I’m about to have a teen already! haha. I so want that for ALL of my children, but my oldest son is the one I am focusing on right now. We have extra trials that have made me decide I need to be more diligent and work even harder right now. I’ve been praying and looking for ways to keep his heart pure and not fall into traps that might be easy to come by at his dad’s house or anywhere, really. Your posts on boy (and girl) specific books and things to encourage them in the way they should go are so encouraging. Thank you!
Sarah, have you considered Covenant Eyes as a filter and accountability monitor…we have used it for over 8 years and we all love it! It works on iPhones, iPads, etc, now, too. http://www.covenanteyes.com/?promocode=deeproots
Great reminder to be careful about what we let our children be exposed to in books! I read aloud to my kids a LOT (which I love and they are loving now too!) We recently started Tom Sawyer. I hadn’t read it in ages and didn’t really remember much about it. While I’m sure it’s great, classic book, I stopped because I didn’t think my son was mature enough to realize that Tom was doing bad things and making bad decisions. I’m sure the time will come when he will be mature enough to learn great lessons from the story, but for now it was not appropriate. So, even ‘good’ books need to be looked at with a discerning eye for our little ones! Thanks for the encouragement today!
I agree with your take on Tom Sawyer, and I’ll include Huckleberry Finn, too. These books are early examples of bringing disrespect into a story without clear consequences. And there are many more, so Mothers and Fathers are wise to be very discerning. Prayer and asking for wisdom from the Lord were (and still are) my chief allies! Thanks, Amy!
Barbara Ann Mojica
I can see that you have done a great job raising your son…Loved this post.
Oh, I pray so, Barbara! Thank you!!
Tina at Mommynificent
Thank you for sharing this encouraging word at Booknificent Thursday on Mommynificent.com! I appreciate it!