Empowerment. Freedom. Respect. Trust. Collaboration. Kindness. What does it really take to raise a child into a hardworking adult?
Larry Page, the founder of Google, says, “The best people want to work the big challenges.” Is giving challenges to my children the secret to molding them into hard working adults? The mother of Susan Wojcicki, the YouTube CEO, said that her secret is empowerment. “What I was giving them was freedom, respect, and trust. I knew what I was doing worked.” Empowerment works wonders, but there is something else besides big challenges and empowerment that underlies the character of ultra-successful, hard working adults.
Biblically speaking, when God created man, the man was immediately put to work, “And the Lord God took the man, and put him into the garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it” (Genesis 2:15 Genesis 2:15And the LORD God took the man, and put him into the garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it.
American King James Version×). Work was created by God from the beginning; it’s by God’s design that man work. When he told Adam to work, Adam did not make excuses. He did not tell God that his hands hurt, or that he had a headache, or that he was tired. He accepted his new job and took responsibility. I’m sure Adam felt satisfied with his work, and this also pleased God.
Unfortunately, excuses plague many households and limit our children’s’ capabilities. To breakthrough through excuses, I have adopted a no-excuse policy. We have allowed excuses so often, most of the time we tune them out. So, now, when I catch my child making excuses, I will call him out. It’s common for children to make excuses (especially with permissive parents), so common, that the child may not realize they are doing it. Also, it’s human nature to make excuses for many different reasons like fear, punishment, or laziness. However, excuse-making prevents children from developing an attitude of self-respect, satisfaction, confidence, and motivation. I have noticed that when my children are encouraged to work hard and overcome their excuses, they do have a sense of self-satisfaction and more confidence.
Hard working people don’t make excuses. If children are given the opportunity and encouragement to work hard, they will learn to accept the challenges and rejoice in the fruit of their labor. “When you eat the labor of your hands, you shall be happy, and it shall be well with you" (Psalms 128:2 Psalms 128:2For you shall eat the labor of your hands: happy shall you be, and it shall be well with you.
American King James Version×). God will bless the child that works hard and overcomes his or her excuses.