It’s a familiar sight nowadays to see a family sitting together in one room but each of them busy looking into their own smartphone.
So how can we as Christian parents speak into the world of our children, who are digital natives? How can we ensure that technology doesn’t overwhelm us but instead use it to guide our children.
1. Understand them
We as parents should not run away from the avalanche of digital distraction disrupting our own and our children’s lives but instead use it to our advantage in parenting.
What matters is how we use it, we have to work hard to understand digital technology. If we want credibility with our children when it comes to technology, we must enter their world.
Paul shares with us his example in 1 Corinthians 9:19–23:
Though I am free and belong to no one, I have made myself a slave to everyone, to win as many as possible. To the Jews I became like a Jew, to win the Jews. To those under the law I became like one under the law (though I myself am not under the law), so as to win those under the law. To those not having the law I became like one not having the law (though I am not free from God’s law but am under Christ’s law), so as to win those not having the law. To the weak I became weak, to win the weak. I have become all things to all people so that by all possible means I might save some. I do all this for the sake of the gospel, that I may share in its blessings.
We need to save our children’s lives by understanding the digital world. We can turn YouTube channels for Bible studies and set up WhatsApp groups with other parents to share Bible verses, prayer points, and our struggles.
Use Christian Spotify playlists to let Godly music invade our homes and follow podcasts and blogs from Christian sources that teach us how to deal with parenting in a godly manner.
2. Keep a balance
Over-use of digital screens has been proven to have a negative cognitive impact on attention, capacity to engage in conversation, and affects sleep too.
We need to be sensible and keep a healthy digital culture in the family without going overboard. Enforce phone curfews, no wifi time, ban at mealtimes, and keep time for open communication in the family.
3. Practice what you preach
If we want to be effective and Biblically driven parents in the digital age, we have to model what we preach.
We should show our kids that they are more important than our Facebook and Instagram family and our phones.
If you enforce bans on on-screen times for the children then you too should abide by it and help keep a perfect balance of digital engagement at home.
We have a moral responsibility not to be consumed by digital technology but spend enough time with our children for effective parenting.
“Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. (Romans 12:2).