I had the opportunity to speak with Pastor Dean Kilmer recently. He has a new book titled, Igniting the Moral Courage of America: Six Ways You Can Inspire People to Live with Integrity,and I wondered what I could do as a mother to raise my daughter to be the person God wants her to be. Here’s what Pastor Kilmer shared with me:
Raising Daughters with Moral Courage
KAGOY may be the most dangerous term you have ever read! According to Juliet B. Schor., author of Born to Buy, companies have coined a slogan: KAGOY, Kids Are Getting Older Younger. Following that philosophy, Abercrombie & Fitch now produces and markets a line of thong underwear for girls ages ten to sixteen, imprinted with phrases like “wink, wink” and “eye candy.” Why would kids buy such clothing? They buy them because their parents allow it! Flash forward a few years and you’ll meet a seventeen-year-old who is beautiful, sweet, smart, and a great athlete, prepared for college, and pregnant. What happened? All of her plans are now gone; the boy is worthless, he’s twenty two years old already has a baby with another girl for which he takes no responsibility. He’s gone, the baby is born deaf, and now life has been changed forever! No more athletics, no more great career plans just the reality of life as a young single mother. It’s not fair; the boy continues to play around while she suffers, not fair, but reality! This real life story demonstrates the reality of girls growing up before they are ready! How can we keep this from happening to our girls? Help your daughter to become a lady!
L—Line in the sand! Draw a line in the sand and keep your girls young as long as possible
A—Attitude is more important than reality
D—Daddy is a key in the development of moral values
Y—Your time is essential
Line in the Sand!
I have a large list of why questions to ask God when I get to heaven. One of those questions is, “Why do kids always push the limits?” I really don’t understand, but every little girl and every little boy will push the limits as far as possible. Discernment and discretion are abilities, which require experience to develop. Since our daughters lack experience, they will make bad decisions about how to dress, who to date, and where to hangout if parents are unwilling to set guidelines. When your daughters begin to develop wisdom and good judgment, then you can discuss possible changes in the guidelines according to their ability to show discretion. Without the line, they will never develop good judgment.
Attitude Is Important!
The reporter was investigating the ugly way young people talk to each other. As you know many teenagers use vulgar and disgusting phases in their regular conversation with their friends. The reporter ended the segment by saying, “Don’t worry about the language; it is only their way of expressing themselves.” Now that is total nonsense! When you say something ugly to me, two things happen. First, my self-esteem is damaged because it hurts and secondly, your self-esteem is lowered because you are one of my peers! In other words, when kids talk ugly to each other, they are reflecting a negative, depressing attitude toward life! Give your daughters an opportunity to enjoy life, train them to have a positive respectful attitude toward everyone. Yes sir and no sir, yes ma’am and no ma’am, please and thank you are powerful attitude builders. Girls with a great attitude change the circumstances of their life by their attitude. Girls with a negative attitude have their lives changed by the circumstances.
Daddy Is a Key!
Many of you mothers will not like this statement, but research has proven that the relationship between a girl and her father is the most important factor in the development of moral principles. Young girls want the attention of a man! If daddy doesn’t provide them with hugs and warmth, they will go looking for attention from any male they can find and that is a disaster. Mothers, please help your husband to get involved in the life of your daughters! My daughter and I spent many hours together while she was growing up. In elementary school, we had “our café” where I occasionally kidnapped her from school during lunch. Later we spent time together playing tennis, swimming, and just being friends. I have never regretted one minute of that time. When Kelly was ready for her first date, it was with her Daddy who took her out. Taking advice from another author, I provided a special night for her. We dressed up in our best, went to a private room in the finest restaurant in town. I demonstrated how a gentleman treats a lady, opening the car door, complimenting her, listening carefully to her thoughts. At the end of the evening, I gave my daughter a gold necklace with a key and a heart design. I carefully explained: Kelly this necklace represents the key to your heart. Now your heart belongs to your daddy, but some day you will give it to another man; make sure he is the type of man who will always treat you with as much love and respect as your daddy. She took the advice and is married to a Godly man who is a good husband and father.
A quick word to single mothers! You can raise great daughters. It will help if you have good, safe, older men from your family or church who are willing to be involved in your daughter’s life.
Your Time Is Essential!
You can’t be a perfect parent, so love you daughters, and spend time with them! Quality time never comes without quantity time. When your children know they are more important than anything else in your life, they will adopt your moral values!