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Screen Time Caution: Ways to Limit Screen Time

Screen Time Caution: Ways to Limit Screen Time

Too much screen time  can be a problem.  Here are some things to remember when allowing your child to get on the screens.

Screen Time Caution

Screen Time

Screen Time: What Happens When There is Too Much

Too much screen time:

  • It can impact the development of a child’s brain.
  • It can decrease family time interaction.
  • It has been linked to speech delay in toddlers.
  • It has been linked to childhood obesity.
  • It has been linked to high blood pressure in children.
  • It may lead to addiction to phones and screens and could lead to hyperactivity or aggression.

Raising healthy children is a challenge.  This is particularly true now that we have children that have never lived without the influence of big and small screens in their lives.  We need to unplug frequently from screens in order to rest well and allow our bodies to recharge.


This post will highlight some of the benefits of using screens like computers and cell phones. There are some cautions that we need to take notice of as well. Take note of the great suggestions on how several parents find a balance when it comes to screen time.

First and foremost, ask the Holy Spirit to help you.  He wants the best for your family and will give you the guidance and the courage you need to set some healthy ground rules and boundaries where screens are concerned.

In addition to asking for help from the Holy Spirit, read the bible and note specific scriptures that would be of benefit. Check out 33 Bible Verses to Pray Over Your Home. This is a great post that highlights 33 scriptures that you can declare over your family. As believers, the first defense is the Sword of the Spirit.

Screen Time Caution: Ways to Limit Screen Time-Blashlearning

33 Bible Verses


Here is another post that will give you some great printables that you can print for your children to use.

Screen Time: Healthy Activities

It is important to acknowledge that there are benefits to using tablets and computers.  Children are able to access books online. Some of these books are read by adults so children get to hear what good reading sounds like.  Reading is one of those habits that we want our children to grasp.

I am sure you are all familiar with Sesame Street.   It is definitely different from when I was growing up but it is still an opportunity for children to learn vowel sounds and practice counting.  This is a great way to use the television and computer screen.

Adventures in Odyssey and Storylin Online

Adventures in Odyssey and Storyline Online

In addition, here are two more of my favorite online resources.  Storyline Online and Adventures in Odyssey are great resources for stories.  Storyline Online features members of the Screen Actors Guild reading stories.  As I mentioned earlier, this is a wonderful way to enjoy good literature and hear what good reading sounds like.  Your child will likely want to read the books for him or herself once they have heard it read to them.

Furthermore, Adventures in Odyssey is set up like the old time radio shows where the story is dramatized on radio.  This was one of our favorite activities as a family as our children were growing up. To this day, we enjoy listening to the stories on Adventures in Odyssey.  Some of the stories are from the Bible while others are fiction pieces with a clear moral message.  Check these out.  You will enjoy them.

Even though Adventures in Odyssey is technically not consumed on a screen, I wanted to include this resource because of its value.  The stories can be used to encourage family discussions on a variety of topics.

Screen Time Balance

There are great ideas that families have discovered to balance screen time for their families.  There are screen time printables that list chores or activities that must be done before children can get on their screens.

Families also use contracts so that children understand that they are making a commitment in order to use screens.

What is a Screen?

There are infographics that make it clear what we are referring to when we use the term screen.  These infographics help you set clear boundaries around screen time. 

There is some wonderful information on how to reduce the amount of time children spend on their screens.  Some families use screen time tickets.  Mom and dad hand out a certain number of tickets to children for the week. Children can earn more tickets by completing a chore or another type of activity you choose.  They can also turn in their tickets for .50 each. Of course, you can decide what they are redeeming their tickets for.

Setting a timer can be a great way of monitoring the time without you, as the parent saying anything. Once the timer goes off, the child knows its time to move on to something else.  This takes a little of the emotion out of the equation.

Screen Time: Control it Through WIFI

Another version of this is to use something that controls the amount of time someone has access to wifi.  This can also filter and control what websites are accessible to each person.   Meetcircle is a great device that parents can use to control what the children have access to at home.

Here is a great article on 25 Websites that are good for Kids.  With everything that you are allowing your child to access, it is a good idea to preview the videos or sites they are going to.  Some of the videos at the beginning may be fine, but as they continue, the material may turn dark or inappropriate.  To be a parent is not for the faint of heart but be encouraged, there are plenty of resources out there that can help.

100 Ways to Bond with Your Child

I also included in a post on 100+ ways to bond with your children. Many of these ideas are centered around conversation. Bonding with your children is important and can be your most important weapon in dealing with the attraction of the screens.  Children enjoy the screens but they really need to connect with family members.

Many of the ways we bond with children involve conversations about things they are interested in or have questions about.  When your children knows that you are interested enough in them to spend time with them, they come to understand that they are important.  This goes a long way in the area of building up self-esteem and confidence.

Our children need to know they are important and they have a place in this world. This is one of the marks of a healthy family. They also need to understand that they can make a difference in the world and they have a purpose. Watching hours of movies or playing hours of video games is only entertainment and recreation.  Entertainment and recreation have their place in but they are not going to build your child up.  That is your job.

What have you done to balance screen time?  I would love to know some of the creative things you have discovered.  Please share them in the comment section and share this with your family and friends that you think might benefit. Share some of the things that you have done as a family to balance screen time.

Book Review-Pre Birth Briefing: Discover the Gift God Made You To Be

Book Review-Pre Birth Briefing: Discover the Gift God Made You To Be

Pre-Birth Briefing

This is a wonderful story of a mother guiding her child to seeing his unique gifts and callings.

Check out the brief video on Susan’s book-Pre-Birth Briefing:

Enjoy this book with your child. Begin talking about how wonderful they are.  This book gives some wonderful insights into how to see what gifts and callings are in your child.

Pre-Birth Briefing?

Susan’s son asked her this very question.  What is a pre-birth briefing?  She gently and lovingly tells her son a story that leads him to understand that he is special, unique, to be treasured.  He comes to understand that he and his generation have a destiny.

As I reflected on Susan’s conversation with her son, I was marked by the way this story so reflects the reality of what our children are.  Some of them don’t know how vital they are to the future but we, as adults, we have the opportunity and the responsibility to make sure our children come to know who they are and how important their lives are.

Pre-Birth Briefing: The World is a Dangerous Place.

Our children face so many challenges. The enemy would have them believe that they are not special and have nothing to offer. This is a lie.  The enemy would have our children think they are some sort of misfit or mistake.

Our children will face many temptations and distractions in this life. So many of the messages being conveyed today leave our children thinking they are not good enough.  Children and young people feel a lack of purpose in their lives.  This is an open door for the enemy to come in and add more confusion and distress to their lives.

Susan’s book-The Pre-Birth Briefing is a great tool for opening a conversation with your children.  It will have you reflecting on your own gifts as well.  You will be inspired to press in and seek the Lord’s purpose for your life and for your child’s life.

Pre-Birth Briefing Your child has a desitny #destiny #children

Pre-Birth Briefing

I so resonate with this book because it is one of those treasures that connects with destiny. This reminds me of Charlotte Mason and her approach to raising and educating children.  She understood that children are whole persons with destiny marked on their spirits.  Charlotte Mason was a British educator that believed that God created each child with a specific gift and calling.  God placed adults in the lives of children in order to help those children discover talents and gifts.

This book would make a great gift for expectant parents.  Grandparents would enjoy reading this book to their grandchildren as well. Susan packed the book with tools that parents and grandparents can use to further explore how special they are.  It is also loaded with beautiful illustrations and engaging writing.  Get your copy today.  Click the picture to order your copy.

How have you shared the Lord with your child?  Have they asked you really tough questions?  How has the Lord helped you answer those questions?  Please share in the comments. I would love to hear how the Holy Spirit is leading and guiding you through these parenting waters.

What are the Best Bibles for Children – One Determined Life

What are the Best Bibles for Children – One Determined Life


Giving our children the opportunity to read the Word of God is one of the greatest gifts we can give.  This is a gift that will impact them for years to come.  Reading the Bible to children is the best way to introduce them to Jesus. But sometimes it hard to know which Bible is the best. Read this post to find my top pics


https://onedeterminedlife.com/best-bibles-for-children/#.WkcVhd-nHIUWhen I search for a bible for the kids I look for versions that are easier for them to understand. They are too young to understand certain words and I want them to be able to relate to the Bible and enjoy reading it. The best way to do that is by choosing a bible that they can understand. Best Bibles for Children – One Determined Life

Click the link to read more suggestions on how to choose a children’s bible for your young readers.  You will be glad you did.

The Word of God: Read to Find Out How the Word of God is a Plumb Line for Life

The Word of God: Read to Find Out How the Word of God is a Plumb Line for Life

The Word of God: Read to Find Out How the Word of God is a Plumb Line for Life-Blashlearing

Plumb Line




The Word of God is our plumb line.

A plumb line is a weight that is suspended by a string.  This is similar to a water level that helps someone doing construction determine if a board is perfectly level. These are standards by which we can measure something.  It is an objective look at something. I can use a plumb line or a level to see if a particular object meets a specific standard. This is important when constructing a building.  If you don’t know if something is level or sitting at a right angle, you run the risk of an inferior construction.  The Word of God is the Plumb Line for the believer.

The Word of God is our plumb line

Amos 7:8 says “The Lord said to me ‘What do you see, Amos?’ And I said, ‘A plumb line.’ Then the Lord said, ‘Behold I am about to put a plumb line in the midst of My people Israel.  I will spare them no longer.” This plumb line of the Word of God is a gift that we can build healthy, whole lives upon. It is the standard by which we can measure our lives. I cannot stress the importance of being able to look to something outside of ourselves to gauge behavior.  We can fool ourselves into thinking that some sin is ok.  We, as human beings, weigh sins but the Lord does not.  For all have sinned and have fallen short of the glory of God. Romans 3:23 (KJV)

The Word of God provides clarity

People seemed to be confused about many things.  We live in an age where some believe that same-sex marriage is appropriate and gender is fluid  The Lord is not confused and His word does not express confusion Certain things don’t change and that helps us to know how to conduct ourselves.  When the boundaries are fluid and subject to change, we don’t have a sense of stability.

Borders, boundaries, and fences are put in place to keep dangerous things out and keep that which is within those boundaries safe. Stability provides security and it allows us to explore new things knowing that there are some things that do not need exploration.  Those are the things that have grave consequences and could cause harm.

A former pastor of mine said: “experience is not the best teacher”. That statement has stayed with me and allowed me to know that I do not have to experience certain things to learn from them.  I can look at the experience of others that have made those mistakes or I can look to the Bible to gain instruction.


How do we know how to act?

There seems to be some confusion on how to conduct oneself.  How do we know right from wrong?

One of the ways that we can know how to act is to look to the Word of God.  Psalm 119:9 says: Wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way? by taking heed thereto according to thy word. (KJV) The New King James Version puts it this way; How can a young man cleanse his way? By taking heed according to Your word.

The Bible is not flaky on its authority.  It plainly states that it provides instruction for daily life and spiritual growth. Hebrews 4:12  For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.

The Word of God, the Bible will read you if you let it.  It is alive and will point out areas in your life that need correcting, It will also bring you comfort and encouragement.

2 Tim 3:16

2 Tim 3:16


Money and Wealth


  • Proverbs 13:11 Wealth gotten by vanity shall be diminished: but he that gathereth by labor shall increase.


  • Proverbs 13:22 A good man leaveth an inheritance to his children’s children: and the wealth of the sinner is laid up for the just.


It may take work to increase wealth but it can be had.  It is not only money that we are talking about here.  Families that are strong and connected have immeasurable wealth.


    • Ephesians 5:21  Submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of God. Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord.  For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the savior of the body.  Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything. Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it.


Yep, this passage requires a lot more comment than what I am going to offer here.  There will be more.  Keep your eyes open.  Let me just point out that there is a sacrifice on both parts in the marriage covenant Click To Tweet and the husband has a great responsibility to his wife.  This passage states that the love that a man is to show his wife is the love that Jesus showed the church.  That love sent him to the cross. Much to think about when entering into the covenant of marriage.

Raising Children



    • Gen 18:19 For I know him, that he will command his children and his household after him, and they shall keep the way of the Lord, to do justice and judgment; that the Lord may bring upon Abraham that which he hath spoken of him.


The creator of the Universe, God, took note of Abraham’s character and saw that Abraham was going to teach his children about the one true and living God.  The Lord treasured this and entered into a covenant that impacts the entire world even to this day.  The family is the cornerstone of our society.  We have to guard and protect the structure of the family that the Lord created.  This provides much-needed strength to our children.  They can grow up to be healthy adults in stable families.

Fathers and mothers have a heavy responsibility to the children in their household.  This is where the young ones will learn of the Lord. We must be about our Father’s business when it comes to our children.

Wisdom and Education


  • Proverbs 1:7 The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction.

We have seen a lot of foolish behavior come to light over the last several weeks and months.  I believe we will see more as the day progress.  It would be wise to remember that what is done in the dark will come to the light.

This is a good thing although it may be uncomfortable. Allowing the Word of God to shine on us and our conduct is the path to a healthy life.  Following the Word of God will in no way harm us but will, in fact, protect us.  Be encouraged and embrace the Word of God.

How has the Word of God brought clarity or healing in your life?  Please share in the comment section.

The Word of God: Read to Find Out How the Word of God is a Plumb Line for your Life Blashlearning

Plumb Line

Alternatives to Higher Education: What’s Your Plan?

Alternatives to Higher Education: What’s Your Plan?

Parenting is a challenge as any parent will tell you.  Education is one of the parenting issues that consume a large portion of parental thought life. Once parents have gotten their child through elementary, middle and high school, what do they do about college?

Related Post:  6 Key Insights from Homeschool Moms

We will explore some alternatives to higher education.

Parents are concerned about the high cost of college, the pressure to fit in and conform, or making it through to graduation.

Interestingly, parents have held to the idea that the traditional four-year college is the only path after high school.   There are some alternatives to higher education that parents should consider.

Alternatives to Higher Education and College Debt

Many schools offer some level of scholarship or grants to students.  This is helpful to a point.  Grants and scholarships are not paid back. However, students find that there is still a gap in tuition they are responsible for.

If three-quarters of the bill is covered by grants and scholarship that leaves one-quarter of the cost for the family to come up with. If that is $25,000, that amount is multiplied by four in order to get to graduation. For most students that means school loans that will follow the student for several years after graduation.

I am not saying the students and families should not pay for education.  It reasonable to pay for an education.  Parents need to consider how much college costs and what the expected return on that investment will be.

The cost of college is increasing at a rate that is alarming and debilitating.  You and your student need to look closely at the major you want to pursue.  Your student may not need to go the traditional route to work in their field of choice.  Steer clear of majors that do not lead to being employed after graduation.

The Burden of Debt

Debt looms heavy over the heads of young people long after they have left the halls of higher learning.

In addition, many students that enter college with the intention of earning a four-year degree, do not graduate. The college may not be a good fit for the student or traumatic events can cut a college career short.

Tragically, young adults are left to pay off debt that represents time spent on the college campus but no diploma. Click To Tweet Without the diploma, their chances of landing a higher paying job can seem slim.

The future looks very bleak for these students. That’s a terrible way to begin life as an adult.  Debt hinders these young adults’ chance of having a disposable income to purchase a car or home.  The pattern is a cruel one and needs to be changed.

Alternatives to Higher Education and Pressures of College Life

Furthermore, students face pressures that lead to poor decisions that impact the rest of their lives.

Students will be challenged on many different fronts:

  • time management
  • homesickness
  • drug and alcohol experimentation and use
  • premarital sex
  • situations that challenge long-held values

Parents send their children off to college with the hopes that their child will hold onto the values instilled in them but temptations often overpower solid foundations.

The cyber world provides an opportunity for young adults to dive into a dark and dangerous world. The hope is that students will exercise good judgment in this area.  Parents, stay connected with your children.  The cyber world can be a place of temptation and danger for your young person.  Keep the lines of communication open.

Alternatives to Higher Education

Hopefully, these alternatives to higher education will give you a place to start looking for different paths to post-secondary education.

Think about what the end game is.  Young adults need to be independent thinkers.  They need to be able to take care of themselves once they leave school.  Young people should be able to use their gifts and talents in their chosen career.

I think about Charlotte Mason’s approach to education.  She encouraged teachers to include teaching a practical craft that students could then use as a possible means of earning money.  This was not the type of craft that you stick on the refrigerator door just to be admired.  These crafts had actual function and use.

STEM careers or medical licenses require the traditional college path. Many careers, however, do not need a traditional college degree.

Alternatives to Higher Education-Start a Business

In the age of the internet, the possibility of starting an online business is a viable alternative to higher education.  Think outside the box.  Your son or daughter’s natural gifts and abilities may find a place in the marketplace. Video platforms are flourishing which makes it possible for your child to teach something on their own Youtube or Periscope channel.

Alternatives to Higher Education-Learn a Trade

Many of our craftsmen are getting older and which is leaving a gap that the younger generation can fill.  Young adults can learn a skilled trade and earn a very good living. This is another alternative that may not require a four-year degree. Auto mechanics and photographers are invaluable.  Appliance repairmen command good salaries as well.  These are jobs that are valuable but do not necessarily require a four-year degree.

Mike Rowe has found a new appreciation for skilled labor.  He has written a book entitled Profoundly Disconnected which highlights the beauty of doing an honest day’s hard work.  He focusses on the skilled labor jobs.  He is attempting to help others appreciate these jobs.  The skilled labor or blue collar jobs have lost esteem in the eyes of many of our youth.

Perhaps that is a mistake.

These are jobs that may not be glamorous but one can raise a family.  Enjoy Mike reading the preface to his book. You will enjoy the book but please, do not listen to it while you are eating.  You have been warned. Click the link at the bottom.

Alternatives to Higher Education Community College

The community college is another alternative to higher education.  If a four-year college is still a goal of your young adult, encourage them to look into community colleges for the basic courses. Students take general education courses in community college at a fraction of the cost of a four-year college.  This allows the student to save money as they complete approximately half of their college coursework at an institution that costs a portion of the four-year college cost.

Alternatives to Higher Education-Apprenticeships

Apprenticeships are also great alternatives to going the traditional higher education route.  They are similar to internships in that they both offer close interaction with a seasoned skilled laborer.  This relationship allows for the expert in the relationship to give the student close instruction and supervision as the student is learning a new skill.  Apprenticeships are paid position. This is the difference between the two opportunities.  The construction industry is experiencing growth in the offering apprenticeships

Additional information on Apprenticeships may be found in companies like Echoing Green and UnCollege Gap Year.

Alternatives to Higher Education-Join the Military

The military life can be a good alternative to higher education for a young man or woman. I have written a blog post about homeschoolers and humanity and the military academies.  There are many homeschool families that may be interested in the academies.  Read the post to find out what you will need if you are a homeschool family.  They are it’s an opportunity for young men and women to dig deep and find the courage and strength to serve our country.  Students can get a sense of what military life is like by joining Jr. ROTC in high school.  The military life is one of discipline and dedication students can gain a sense of patriotism and loyalty.

Interestingly, our young adults have many freedoms they may not be ready for. They may not say it out loud, but they enjoy the structure that the military life offers.  The structure allows the young adult to mature and discover his or her strengths and weaknesses while contribution to the defense of his or her country.

Finally, it is easy to see that there are several options to the traditional higher education route.  Hopefully, this will give some insight as to what is possible for a young adult.  Are there other options not mentioned here? Do you have an opportunity for a young high school graduate?







Be aware of the apps on your child’s cell phone.


6 apps parents need to be aware of

6 apps parents need to be aware of

Teenagers and pre-teens are busy maturing and growing.  Responsibilities increase and these young people are getting prepared for lives as young adults. As they make their way through the pre-teen and teen years they will go through the mind-field of some potentially dangerous cell phone apps before they reach adulthood.

It doesn’t matter what kind of phone your child has.  iPhones, as well as androids, have plenty of apps that can cause problems. (I know I have missed some of the current apps. Please feel free to place new apps in the comment section of this post.)

Texting: Just the tip of the iceberg

Teen emotions run high and impulsive behavior runs equally high. Being an emotional pre-teen or teenager along with possessing a cell phone can be a recipe for disaster. It is true that cell phones can be a great way to stay connected to parents if teens are in after-school sports or have a job.

It’s comforting to know that you can text your son or daughters phone and know you can reach them when you are a little worried about them. You can make sure they are safe.  

Strong connections in families are the saving grace in our crazy society. No doubt about it. Cell phones can make communication easier. It is sad to have to admit that the cell phone can also be our greatest hindrance to communication. It is not unusual to see teens, as well as adults, face down in their cell phones not talking to one another.

Some families have rules to promote conversation at dinner by not allowing the cell phone to come to the table with them.  This is a start but there is more involved when dealing with the reality of cell phones.

Cell phone apps

An app on cell phones is like fires with a hamburger. You are, most likely, going to have several apps on your cell phone.  Some of the apps are used for budgeting to tracking your heart rate after exercise.

They are convenient and handy. They can also build walls between people and lure young people into dangerous territory.

Cell phone apps can lay the foundation for trouble if parents are not aware.  Even if you are aware, what do you do to protect your children?

Here are just 6  cell phone apps or online platforms that parents need to be aware of if they hope to keep the connection alive, healthy, and active between their child.  It is up to parents and concerned adults to determine whether these apps and cell phones along with tablets are dangerous to our young people. The dangers that can be found in these apps is in how they are used.

Many of the apps just provide a convenient and often cheap means of communication.  Most of these apps are free and can be used for connecting with other people.  Some of the apps have filters where you can make funny faces and just be silly. The problem lies in the ability for teens to have conversations or share pictures that parents know nothing about.

Sometimes these conversations happen with people that the parents don’t know.  More importantly, some of these individuals mean to do our children harm.

List and description of dangerous apps.

  • Snapchat– is an app that can be used to snap a brief video and then the video self-destructs. The idea is that funny or silly videos are snapped and then they go away.  With that thought in mind, people take more chances on what they are snapping. The user may choose to snap a nude video or something else inappropriate because they feel that it will be gone in a short period of time.  The problem is that people can do a screen grab and post the video anywhere they like.  Therefore, the video then lives on.


  • Snapmap-Snapchat has updated the app. There is now a map that reveals the location of the user.  You can put the app on ghost mode but the problem is there is the potential of someone not known to the user seeing exactly where the user is.  This is another layer of vulnerability that parents need to be aware of.


  • Whatsapp-is an app that can be used to text privately. It is quickly gaining in popularity because it allows you to text free.  Users can use the app in groups or one to one conversations.  There is an encryption feature that prevents anyone from seeing the conversations of the users.  This leaves teens vulnerable to adults that would abuse their trust and also it puts teens at risk for bullying from other teens.  It is difficult to deter the inappropriate conversations when you cannot verify what is being said.

  • Kik-is another messaging app. The attraction for teens is that Kik has an internal web browser so users can play games, watch videos, listen to music and check out content on Reddit.  One of the concerning aspects of Kik is that there is an internal app call Flirt. This exposes teens to others online that may mean them harm. Kik is anonymous which means you do not need to link your account to a phone number, nor do you need to use your real name.  Children are vulnerable to abuse and kidnapping as they engage with adults they do not know. There are stories of the anonymous adults posing as young girls persuading other young girls to send nude pictures and then using those pictures to threaten these young girls.


  • Omegle-is a platform that doesn’t require an app. You can go directly to the site.  Users are paired with others users at random so the potential for inappropriate chats and adult conversation is likely.  This again, is dangerous for teens since their judgment is not fully developed.


  • Whisper– Users on whisper are sharing their deepest darkest secrets because the platform allows you to be anonymous. The rants or comments can be liked by other anonymous users. Users can private message other users and lure them into potentially dangerous situations.


  • Instagram-Finstagram Many of us are familiar with Instagram but have you heard of Finstagram.  Finstagram is the fake version of Instagram that can be created to hide certain chats and photo shares.  This allows users to have their known persona and secret account in order to keep parents from being able to check on their children.

The possibility of creating fake accounts on other platforms is very real. Parents need to know that they may be checking their child’s online accounts but there are ways for the children to create fake accounts that go un-monitored.

Above everything that we can do in the natural, we must share our faith in Jesus with our children and believe the Lord for their lives and salvation.  If our children have a strong relationship with the Lord, they are going to hear the Holy Spirit as He tugs on their hearts when temptations swirl.

This is not to say they won’t make mistakes, but they are likely to think about their actions more carefully when they know their actions may displease the Lord. The underlying problem with these cell phone apps and platforms is that it provides an avenue where parents have a difficult time staying involved and connected to their children’s lives.

Children get the idea that their parents aren’t very smart or are to busy for them. This disconnect only deepens with the abuse of these apps and the potential for seeking connection and understanding from someone other than a parent increases.

Parental Monitoring

There are some things that you, as parents, can do to provide safe boundaries for your children. The first thing you need to do is make sure that the lines of communication are open between you and your child.

They need to know that you are not out to catch them. Teens need to understand that you want them to have good healthy fun lives. Our job, as adults in the lives of these teens and younger, is to communicate that we love them and we want the best for them.

They must trust that. I would also encourage you to think carefully about your child’s age.  Just because your 8-year-old child’s friend has a phone of his or her own, that doesn’t mean that it is time to give your child a phone.

You decide.

You are the parent and you are not running a popularity contest.  This is so critical. Children are looking for you to parent them, not to friend them.  It takes courage and strength but you are responsible for the safety of your child.

Oh, and by the way, you are the one that is going to be paying the bill. When you feel that your child is old enough to handle a phone, then make that step. This next piece of advice applies to cell phones as well as tablets.  All of those screens need to be monitored. The sheer volume of time our children spend on screens is an issue that must be dealt with.

Too much screen time is simply not healthy.  Just to point to one issue, studies have shown that too much screen times leads to obesity. I would encourage you to check out Jay Andrews from Reviews Across the Board.  He has developed several videos that showcase some the current monitoring devices that can help you keep in touch with what your children are watching and who they are talking to. You may need to limit your child’s screen time. You can do this with a device called Circle with Disney.

I (Rosemerry Blash) am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.  This means that if you go to Amazon from my site and make a purchase, I receive payment from Amazon. This will not cause an increase in cost to you but it does help support this blog. This is a parental monitoring device that has filters and controls that you can use to help you and your child create an onscreen atmosphere that is limited and safe. Taking this precautions when they are young will help equip them for the older years when they need to monitor themselves.

As they mature, they will have the ability to make good choices based on values that you have instilled in them. As I mentioned earlier, parenting is not for the faint of heart but it is one of the most rewarding things you will do in your life.  Creating a healthy home atmosphere for your child will ensure healthy generations in the future.  This, in turn, will impact our culture and society.

Have you had any concerns with apps your children are using?  What have you found to be helpful in dealing with this issue? Please share your comments in the comment section.

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