Fr. Rafail, disciple of Archimandrite Sophrony of Essex, talks about gaining our children’s trust through liberating love. His remarks are based on his own experience as a former child and his taking care of the kids who were joining the monastery with their families on Sundays.
Fr. Rafail Noica:
What extraordinary deep questions or words could come out of a child, as the Savior said: “out of the mouth of infants and nursing babies…” (Matthew 21:16). And sometimes we laughed because they were funnily expressed, but we were always impressed by how and what a child thinks…
And the last thing I would say for parents… As a former child, I think the most important thing is to gain the child’s trust. I don’t know how to do it, may God enlighten you. But our parents, I have a sister, gained our trust through love. By a love that gave us the freedom to be what we are now. Paradoxically, this liberty is the one which kept us, me and my sister, from the sins so common to youth, and it was not a form of discipline or some abstract child development principles.
And… my sister started to date different men… she was attracted to one or the other. Do you know who her closest counselor was? Her mother. Later on I noticed that many mothers don’t know how to gain the trust of their children, to become a counselor and friend in such intimate, delicate moments.
May God help you to understand your children’s inclinations and gain their trust.