Parents can strengthen their family, community, and nation by teaching correct principles to their children. When children are properly taught at home, they usually do not end up burning businesses and rioting in the streets. For better or worse, most children follow the examples set by their parents.
The responsibility to properly teach children rests heavily on parents in all ages. However, the load seems heavier now that we live in this crazy, up-side-down world. We live in a world where good is called evil and evil is called good. In addition, the support system for parents is no longer strong.
Not too many years ago parents had the support of church, school, and community in teaching children to be good citizens. As one example, children understood that lying and stealing was wrong. They were taught by their parents to be honest. They were taught in Primary classes that honesty was the best policy. School teachers expected students to be honest and do their own work in class. Society helped to teach the same lessons.
I remember returning to grocery stores on more than one occasion because one of my children took something without paying for it. I am grateful that I was supported in teaching honesty every single time. I took the child to the clerk at the store and explained the situation and made it as easy as possible for the child to apologize for taking something without paying for it. Every time, the clerk said something to reinforce my teaching of honesty. With the lack of morals in our society, I wonder if I would receive the same support today.
I can imagine the stress on parents as they have assumed the jobs of schoolteachers and Primary teachers as well as parents. Members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints are fortunate in that the Church made changes that helped prepare us to teach and learn at home. However, the additional duties are heavy and come at a stressful time in the world. There is a worldwide pandemic with a coronavirus that seems to be quite contagious. There are millions of people getting sick and thousands of them are dying. Parents are justified in being fearful for their children, but little children have less understanding than adults at what is happening. They often have fears that we do not even imagine.
There are also the tensions in the United States caused by riots taking place in various cities across the country and elsewhere. In addition, this is a presidential election year with all the tension, lies, misquotes, and ugliness of politics. In addition, many parents have lost their jobs or part of their income.
Part of the stress is caused by not knowing what to expect. Parents are trying to decide whether to send their children back to school or keep them home for school. Some parents have no choice because the schools are not reopening, and some of those same parents would send their children to school.
I believe that the craziness of our world will continue because we live in the last days before Jesus Christ returns to rule and reign on earth. I believe that things will get much worse before they get better. Meanwhile, the best counsel that I can give to parents who are carrying such heavy loads is to pray over your decisions. What is right for you and your family may not be the best answer for your neighbor or your best friend. However, Heavenly Father will hear your prayers and will help you to make the best decisions. With help from God, parents can strengthen their family and become an influence for good in their community and nation.