Trophy Buck, Trophy Child

All over the countryside, men and women are unpacking their camouflaged clothing and sighting in their weapons. Opening Day for Rifle Season here in Michigan is November 15. Daring Does and Baby Bambi – hide! The woods will be crawling with gun-toting hunters before the break of day on Thursday. And Big Bucks – run for cover! You’re the one everyone is hoping for. To have a magnificent rack on display would be, for many, a dream come true. But it’d ruin your life, Deer!

All over the country, moms and dads are preparing to put their children on display. The kid’s future in their sights, parents are doing everything they can think of to give their ‘little precious’ an advantage, the opportunities they (the parents) never had, one leg up on the competition. To have a magnificent child on display would be, for many, a dream come true. But it may ruin their life, my dear!

A few weeks back I heard an interview with Ted Cunningham on his latest book (released in September) Trophy Child. He talked about how parents today are doing everything they can to promote and exhibit their children. A trophy child. I immediately thought of the many hunters I know and their tireless pursuit for “the big one”. The trophy buck.

The book sounds intriguing. I have not read this book – yet. Another book, similar in topic, that I have read is titled “Raising Kids for True Greatness” by Tim Kimmel. I would highly recommend either one.

Sometimes it’s easier to get advice from someone on the ‘outside’ – not our neighbor or co-worker or mother-in-law. Sometimes hearing what we really NEED to hear from an unbiased source lets us look a bit more objectively at our lives.

‘Saving parents from performance, preparing children for something greater than themselves’ is the subtitle to Cunningham’s book, Trophy Child.

When I get down the road a ways and can look in the rearview mirror of life, I’ll be able to see things more clearly… but then it’ll be too late to put the van in reverse! Reading books like this help me to see life (and parenting issues in particular) through a clearer perspective. Did I ever tell you about my five fabulous children? Oh yea – no more trophies on display! ______________________________________________________

Want more info on Trophy Child? The following is part of an article from where Cunningham, author of parenting books such as Great Parents, Lousy Lovers and Young and in Love, was interviewed on this latest title.

According to Pastor Ted Cunningham, “Parents today are accelerating the childhood milestone and delaying the adulthood milestones. For the first 10 years or so we push our kids with programs like ‘My Baby Can Read,’ potty training by first birthday, accelerated reading, gifted programs, and launching their professional sports career in kindergarten,” Cunningham continued. “Our children become conditioned to run, run, run.

Then at age 10-13 (tween years) something happens. Our children begin to differentiate and separate from mom and dad. They pick their own clothes, friends and activities and mom and dad freak out and start to apply the brakes. This is when we start delaying the adulthood milestones. We pushed our kids for 10 years, now we want them to slow down and not ‘Grow up too fast.’ I think the teen years are more about a parenting crisis than a teen crisis.”

The Christian author noted that Scripture speaks to two seasons of life: childhood and adulthood. “The real question is when does your child become an adult? 13? 18? 22? With prolonged adolescence, some are holding off adulthood well into their 30s. When will you allow them to take on adult responsibilities, and that includes their own opinions and choices?” he asked.

“Don’t bubble wrap and helmet your kids for everything. Be most concerned about their character, not comfort.” “Our character is developed through difficulty. Take a step back from the playground and allow your child to develop those critically important life negotiation skills without interference from a helicopter parent,” Cunningham concluded.


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