Raising Sons

Mentoring Tips

Make one-to-one mentoring easier by learning what to do and what not to do.  Click to learn more.

Tip#1 – Find your PLACE

  • Pray: simple yet powerful act
  • Listen: people want to feel heard
  • Ask: good questions foster productive dialogue
  • Consider: think slowly and biblically
  • Encourage: uplift rather than beat down
Tip#2 – Avoid the common mistakes

  • Fixing: this is a person, not a project
  • Preaching: walk alongside, don’t talk at or down to them
  • Carrying: show concern but don’t carry too heavy a burden
  • Blaming: no condemnation in Christ Jesus
  • Rescuing: you are not their savior!
    • Do you pray regularly for your son? With him?
    • If you had only three words to describe your son which words would you chose? Why?
    • What does your son do that makes you laugh?
    • In what ways is your son like you? In what ways are they more like your spouse?
    • How much time do you spend with your son? What do you like to do together?
    • What are your greatest concerns about parenting a son?
    • How would you describe your relationship with your son?
    • What are the goals you have for your son as he becomes a man?
    • The most important relationship in your daughter’s life is the one she has with Jesus Christ. Has she verbalized her belief in Jesus as her Savior and how is that impacting her development?
    • What does being a father (or mother) of a son mean to you?
    • Dad, how are you modeling godly manhood? Where could you improve?
    • How are you opening your inner life to your son? (1 Thess.2:8)
Deeper Questions
    • Have you taught your son a biblical definition of manhood, like that found in the Men’s Fraternity curriculm?
    • Do you have a group of men who will help you build into your son’s life?
    • What role does your local church play in your life personally?
    • How are you sharing spiritual principles with your son?
    • Dad, are you opening up your inner life to him? (1 Thessalonians 2:8)
    • How are you teaching your son the importance of setting priorities?
    • Are you following God and inviting your son to follow you?
    • Dad, are you modeling how to treat women well by how you treat your son’s mother?
    • Mom, are you modeling godly womanhood that will teach your son what to look for in a wife someday?
    • In your home how do you monitor media intake to insure that he is not becoming ensnared by the world’s seduction?
    • Does your son have your permission to be who God designed him to be? And does he feel your pleasure in that?
    • Does your son show signs if taking initiative or is he more passive, even on things that are important?
    • How are you celebrating your son’s inner character rather than just his athletic abilities or physical attributes?
    • What is one step you can take in the right direction and how can I help you do that?
Online Helps
Other Ministry Links
  • Salem4Youth A working ranch for prodigal boys
  • Probe Ministries Building Christians into confident ambassadors
  • Visit Pure Freedom founded by Bob and Dannah Gresh, provides resources to equip men and women of all ages to live lives of purity.
  • Purpose Driven Camp Christian treatment service for families with troubled teens
  • Raising Truly Great Kids Promotes a character-driven strategy for parenting
  • Safe Eyes  Software that protects your family from dangers on the internet
  • - Robert Lewis, Raising a Modern‐Day Knight, p. 61

    “Settle upon a manhood definition that you and your son can pursue together. You cannot call your son to a vision you cannot define. And remember, the deeper your commitment to personally pursue this vision yourself is, the better for your son. It must be real to you in order to be real to him.”

  • - Robert Lewis, Raising a Modern‐Day Knight, p. 72

    “We often view spiritual training as an event. God expands it to include a lifestyle! The father who has committed himself to these ideals and has placed them upon his own heart is continually looking for opportunities to teach them to his son.”

  • - Robert Lewis, Raising a Modern‐Day Knight, p. 76

    “Life is more than a job. Sons need to hear this from a dad. They need to see this in his life. Nothing satisfies the human heart as fully as service for the kingdom—in one’s area of giftedness.”

  • - Robert Lewis, Raising a Modern‐Day Knight, p. 151

    “If you are serious about moving your son to manhood, begin asking the Lord to lead you to a small community of men. Seek out a group of fathers with sons who will band together with you in the adventure.”

  • - Crawford Loritts, Never Walk Away, p. 26

    “I believe the greatest relational longing that a man has is the need for a heart connection with his father. When that connection is gone—whether it has been severed or was never established—it launches him into a passionate search for the love, approval, and affirmation of a dad.”

  • - Robert Lewis, Raising a Modern‐Day Knight, p. 58

    “Biblical manhood was never intended to be burdensome. Instead, real manhood was designed by God to be liberating and a means of great reward.”

  • - Robert Lewis, Raising a Modern‐Day Knight, p. 10

    “Typically what passes for masculine training in most homes is vague and hit‐or‐miss. We assume sons will somehow ‘get it.’ But most don’t.”

  • - Kent Hughes, Disciplines of a Godly Man, p. 52

    “The tragedy is that so many men have left [discipline] to their children’s mothers. Not only is this unfair to the mother, but it robs the child of the security and self‐esteem which come from being disciplined by the father.”

  • - Dan Doriani, The Life of a God‐Made Man, p. 84

    “If we view fatherhood as a series of problems and solutions, we miss the first and most important principle: successful parenthood depends on who you are more than on the techniques you know.”

  • - Robert Lewis, The New Eve, p. 106

    “I cannot stress enough how important it is for you as a parent to both recognize and honor who your child is and what gifts and abilities he or she possesses. Don’t overlook or play down talents that seem odd or undesirable to you. Play up your child’s gifts!”

  • - Dennis and Barbara Rainey, Growing a Spiritually Strong Family, p. 33

    “We have yet to meet a child (or an adult, for that matter) who feels deeply loved when he is given only occasional bursts of ‘quality time.’”

  • - Stephen Arterburn and Sam Gallucci, Road Warrior, p. 52

    “You might have heard the old adage: it’s not quantity time that matters; it’s quality time. But really, that’s a partial truth. It is quality time that matters, but quality time can only happen when plenty of quantity time is available.”

  • - Dennis and Barbara Rainey, Growing a Spiritually Strong Family, p. 35

    “As you parent you must never back off from giving affection. When your sons and daughters are teenagers, it may feel awkward—but don’t stop. They still need your loving touch.”

  • - Robert Lewis, Raising a Modern‐Day Knight, p. 161

    “Good fathers exhort and encourage and implore their sons; great fathers drive home these messages with their own spiritual, moral, and social integrity … In a thousand different ways, a son absorbs his father’s values by witnessing actions, behaviors, and attitudes. The real legacy we leave in our sons’ lives is what we have lived out before them.”

  • - Tim Kimmel, Grace‐Based Parenting, p. 83

    “There is a cause and effect between encouragement and confidence. Kids who hear well‐timed and well‐placed affirmation from their parents are more easily convinced of the truth the Bible says about their intrinsic worth.”

  • - Tim Kimmel, The High Cost of High Control, p. 172

    “We need to let our children know they can come to us at any time about anything. After the first few times that they come to us and hear us assume responsibility and apologize for our actions against them, they’ll know they can trust us with their emotions.”

  • - Dennis and Barbara Rainey, Growing a Spiritually Strong Family, p. 32

    “When we model qualities of our Father in heaven by allowing the love of Jesus Christ to flow through us and into our children, we’re succeeding as parents. We do not propose a complicated, deeply theological set of practices to make this happen. Our advice is simple and summarized by three ‘T’s: time, touch, and talk.”

  • - Dan Allender, How Children Raise Parents, p. 26

    “Our children hunger to know that they are loved unconditionally, through failure and success, no matter what they say or do. And, while few would ever admit it, they are dying to experience the security and comfort that come with appropriate boundaries.”

  • - Robert Lewis, Raising a Modern‐Day Knight, p. 69

    “Every young man needs a comprehensive view of life that begins with this fundamental proposition: True satisfaction in life is directly proportionate to one’s obedience to God. In this context, moral boundaries take on a whole new perspective: They become benefits, not burdens.”

Next Steps
    • Esteem them for reaching out to a mentor in the area of parenting sons
    • Encourage your mentee to get involved in a local, Bible‐believing church for spiritual growth and accountability
    • Encourage them to consider forming a parenting HomeBuilders bible study group
    • Encourage moms to connect with other moms at MomLife Today
    • Encourage dads to consider connecting with other men in a Men’s Fraternity group
    • Encourage them to say “I love you” as often as their son can stand it
    • Encourage dads to do projects with their sons, like washing the car (and his bike), painting a fence, etc.
    • Encourage them to invite God into conversations with their son(s) through prayer every day
    • Encourage dads to include their sons in recreational activities; do “guy stuff” together to reinforce masculinity
    • Encourage them to model obedience and humility by admitting their own mistakes in parenting
    • Remind them that the relationship they have with their son(s) is more important than any list of rules
    • Remind them that it is important to develop a vision and strategy for the kind of people you want your son to become
    • Encourage them (along with their spouse) to develop a parenting mission statement to guide parenting decisions
    • Encourage them to be responsible for the spiritual/moral development of their sons and not leave it up to the church
    • Remind dads that it is important to model the type of Christian man you would like your son to become (“imitate me”)
    • Remind moms that it is important to model what a godly Christian woman/wife looks like
    • Encourage them to look to God’s Word for principles to address the son’s behaviors and decisions
    • Remind them that perhaps the most important thing they can do for their son in the home is to love their own spouse