The 4 Core Values I’m Teaching My Daughter

The 4 Core Values I’m Teaching My Daughter

The older I get the more I realize what an unfair advantage Emily and I had in life. Thanks to our parents we are both standing on the shoulders of giants when it comes to our faith and principles that lead to success. Both sets of our parents had to overcome tremendous challenges and break some pretty ugly cycles in their families to give us that advantage. They fought hard battles to make it easier for us. For that I am forever grateful.

With the birth of our daughter Elise I began to realize what a tremendous responsibility is now placed on me to carry on that legacy. I want to make sure that my daughter goes higher and further than Emily or I could ever go.

So for the last year I’ve been really thinking through the values I want to prioritize in our family. There are so many things she needs to learn in this complex world, but for our family I’ve narrowed it down to four specific focuses:

1. Wisdom – Wisdom is right application of knowledge. Intelligence and knowledge are worthless if they are not used to live skillfully. Wisdom recognizes that principles work in all situations. When you learn to operate within the constraints of God’s principles you can navigate and thrive in this world of complexity. Wisdom is a crown. Proverbs 4:5-9

2. Humility – Humility is not weakness. It is strength and confidence in who God says we are. When we have a proper view of ourselves God can use us in great ways. The greatest example of humility is Jesus who humbled himself and became a servant. Philippians 2:3-11

3. Open Hands – We are generous with time, talents, and money. Everything we have been given is a gift from God. We hold what he has given us loosely, recognizing that at any given moment he may ask us to release it and begin again, empty-handed. Our open-handedness is a sign of our faith in God’s goodness.  Luke 6:38

4. Courage – Courage is taking action in spite of fear. Even when we are afraid we won’t let it paralyze us. The only One we fear is God. So we will do hard things, even when they scare us. Joshua 1:6-9

My plan is for us to memorize each of the verses associated with our core values. I’m also going to post our core values up on the wall so we can see them every morning at breakfast. I’m believing that as she focuses on those four areas she will have a solid foundation that will take her further and higher than Emily and me.

I encourage you to take some time to think through your core values. What are the four or five areas you want to be a foundation for your children? Write them out and make them visible somewhere in your home. Then be intentional about talking about them. But more importantly – live it. More is caught than taught. Live it out. Let your children see a life that embodies all you believe.

Write the vision; make it plain on tablets, so he may run who reads it. Habakkuk 2:2