“A military family should develop a plan for dealing with deployments. This gives children a sense of stability during the upheaval of multi-transitions. They will know what to expect each time a separation occurs and that their parents are working together in spite of being physically apart.”
“The general quality of the home atmosphere and the family parent-child relationship before deployment impacts your parent-child relationship during and after deployment. Securely attached children are more resilient and can receive love from caring, substitute caregivers more securely and readily than children who did not have the wonderful benefit of your consistent, loving parenting.”
“How counter-cultural would it be to have children who look at their circumstances of deployment and understand that God has a purpose specifically designed for them through this experience? He has something to teach them of His character—something that will set them apart from the rest of the world, something that will defeat bitterness and resentment.”
“The battle for our children’s lives is waged out on our knees. When we don’t pray, it’s like sitting on the sidelines watching our children in a war zone getting shot at from every angle. When we do pray, we’re in the battle alongside them, appropriating God’s power on their behalf.”
“The proof that any model of parenting is effective is not how the parents and children get along. It isn’t even how well they treat and respect each other after they are all grown up. Even nonreligious families can accomplish this. The real test of a parenting model is how well-equipped the children are to move into adulthood as vital members of the human race.”
“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.”
Good job accepting responsibility for your children and family despite the challenges of deployment.
Make a plan with your spouse regarding your children’s activities and development for this time of deployment. Discuss this with your children as well.
Together with each child, set a spiritual goal and discuss how important spiritual growth is. You could decide to read a Christian book at the same time to discuss it or memorize verses.
Pray regularly, asking the Lord for wisdom and guidance in the area of parenting.
Seek out other Christian parents who are dealing with deployment. Meet together for fellowship, sharing each others’ burdens, wisdom and experience.
Set up g-mail accounts for your children so you can write personal e-mails to them and do so! Even if the e-mail is only 2 or 3 lines, it lets them know you are thinking of them and love them.
If you are able to Skype, be sure to include everyone. Be upbeat and happy. Let your communication as a family be a fun occasion, not a time of dread when everyone is disciplined.
Talk/e-mail with your spouse about parenting issues, preferably privately, and take these discussions to heart, asking when and how you can help. Decide together how to tackle problems and show a united front when communicating decisions to the children.
Pray with the family via Skype or tell them in your e-mails what you have been praying for each of them.
Work on your relationship with each child. The spouse who is not the in-house authority figure at the moment may find the children are more open to sharing their problems, fears and concerns with you.
Actions speak louder than words. Fulfill your responsibilities as a godly parent whether you are the one at home or the one miles away.
Look to God’s Word for principles to address problems your children face or decisions which need to be made. Read, study and memorize the Bible.
Read an online article or book from the suggested resources and discuss it.
How can I help you deal with your long-distance parenting concerns?