When my son was around 14 I read an article somewhere, probably in Michael Pearl's publication or Above Rubies or maybe one of Vision Forum's publications about expectations in children. It may have been something else and I really wish I had a decent memory because maybe then you could read the article yourself and get out of it the same thing I did. What I discovered was a Code Statement.
A Code Statement was something that was a statement that meant something only to you and your child. Or in some families it was a Family Code Statement. Because of the unusual dynamics of my household, things like this were strictly between my kids and me. The statement was a code between you and your child that was the synopsis of everything that you expected and hoped for your child when you were not there. Now the article didn't say this exactly, but you know how when you read something and you get an idea that comes from the basis of what someone else is saying but it is not really what they are saying? Know what I am saying? Sorry, couldn't resist....:))
Seriously though, I sat down one day and thought about the things that were important to me for my child to do and not do when I was not there to help him. How to resist temptation that the devil makes sure you are 100 miles away from your child before he unleashes it, that kind of temptation. What words could I put in my child's head that would give him strength without him having to take the time to pull out a long list of "Do Not's" and think "well would my Mom want me to do this?" and all that kind of stuff. So I made a list, and the name of the list was "Promise Me".
It was something like this:
Promise Me that you will not put anything evil in front of your eyes
Promise Me that nothing evil will cross your lips
Promise Me that you will not do anything that you could not do with me watching you
Promise Me that you will not say anything that you would not say in front of me or the Preacher
Promise Me that above all you will think of Jesus Christ before you embark or partake in anything
Promise Me that you will keep your eyes, ears and heart pure at all times.
Promise Me that you will not look at any immodest woman or thing, that your eyes stay pure
Promise Me that you will think and say only what is Godly and pure so that your laughter and fellowship
will be pure and happy.
This is not the exact list, my son just read it again, he is now 19, almost 20, but it is close. If we find that old battered list I will put it up, but this gives you the gist of it.
You may think that is alot to put on a 14 year old, but it is not, because way before that age he has been bombarded by imagery, and stories and temptations way beyond what you may think. Even you Godly Homeschoolers young men have things thrown at your child when he is not next to you, sometimes even in the pew next to you. Satan is so devious and he hates your children more than you can know because God loves them so much, he wants to destroy them. And uses any means he can. So, to give my child strength, in accordance to the scripture, to raise them in the way they should go, I came up with a code statement. And every time he left my presence, whether to go on youth camps, out the door to Boy Scouts or to the homeschool Co-Op or even to his Sunday School class, when my son gave me the mandatory goodbye kiss on the cheek, I would whisper "Promise Me" and he would always say to me, looking me in the eyes, "I Promise". And I let him go. To go out of my presence, into the world with a promise on his lips to his Mother, who he knew was praying for him constantly. He had all the scriptures memorized and knew that in promising me all these things, that he was in actuality, promising God. It made a difference. This link to my heart, this promise, meant something to my son for many years. And it still does.
When I put him the plane in the morning and kiss him goodbye as he flies away from me for 6 months to 9 different states working for a ministry to promote the kingdom of God through the equipping of young minds in government, I will whisper "Promise Me" and he will, I have no doubt, look me in the eyes and whisper back "I Promise".
It is is our code statement, not meant for other ears, only our two, a promise to God between us. My promise to God that I will pray for my child and raise him in the Admonition of the Lord, and my child's promise to me that he will live his life for God by following His precepts. It is a blessing to give to your child, something to hold on to when you are not there, something for them to live up to and something for them to stand by when you cannot stand by them.