2 Questions Every Child Needs to Answer to Make Wise Decisions

making wise decisions

It was a terrible moment when I recently found an inappropriate text my 13-year-old son had sent to a girl at his school. He had used a slang abbreviation that included a profanity.

My son’s hormones are in full flame but, unfortunately, his discernment is not. His lack of maturity and poor decision-making led me to do a lot of soul-searching. “How can I convey to my son why it’s so important to be making wise decisions? How can I shore up the foundation that his father and I have tried to lay?”

That line of thinking brought me back to two very simple questions I needed to ask him. Not only so that I could hear his answer, but so that he could ponder what he felt and believed. Here are the two questions every mom should ask her child.

1. Who are you?

This question can prompt all kinds of answers, and that’s okay. “I’m a boy. I’m a child. I’m a member of our family.” Your child’s answer will give you a peek into how your child defines himself. “I’m a soccer player. I’m a seventh grader.”

What his answer also gives you is an opportunity to explain his place in your family and in the world. I shared with my son that, in my eyes, he is a child still learning his way. We talked about how he is a part of our family and God’s family. I wanted him to identify with the beliefs we value. I also explained to him that the choices he makes will determine the kind of life he has — good choices, good life; bad choices…well, your chances go up for a bad life. {Tweet This}

2. What is your purpose?

This one goes a little deeper, and before you even ask this question, tell your child, “I love you so much and I am so thankful for the joy you bring me and our family.” Then explain to your child that he is here to do good in the world and to help others. I told my son that our purpose in life is to use our gifts and abilities to make the world a better place and to honor God by the way we use our abilities. So to help your child use this question to make better choices, teach him to think before he acts: Does this action or choice fit into my purpose to make the world better and to love others? 

You can also tell your child that we are also here to live joyfully and abundantly. Life is a gift.

Our TALK Conversation Starters will take your even further.

What do you tell your children about their purpose for being alive?