Parenting Though Peer Pressure

When Jimmy and Laura Seibert first became parents, they knew they’d have to face the reality of peer pressure, even at an early age. Laura recalls their days as college pastors counseling students through wounds they had experienced years before that were still affecting their lives in a significant way. Peer pressure can be damaging if kids aren’t prepared to stand alone, knowing you’ll always have their back.

“Peer pressure is powerful. Everyone wants to be loved and fit in; at times I still struggle with that as an adult. But we believe living a ‘normal’ life will not change the world,” explains Jimmy in chapter ten of Parenting Without Regret. “Anyone who commits to radically following God will feel abnormal.”

Because Jimmy and Laura recognized the powerful influence friends can have on the lives of children, they set out to create a safe environment at home, in which their kids knew they were loved and supported. Laura explains that both she and Jimmy experienced the negative effects of peer pressure growing up. “We saw firsthand the truth of 1 Corinthians 15:33: ‘Bad company corrupts good morals.’ As a result, when we started raising our own children, we committed to doing whatever we could to help them develop positive friendships.”

From the beginning, Jimmy and Laura committed to knowing and investing in their children’s friends, even when it meant extra time and attention. Laura remembers feeling tempted to clean or read when her kids had friends over at the house, but instead of using the time for herself, she often took the time to listen to how they were playing and stepped in when necessary, especially during the early years.

“There’s no way any parent can control every detail of life, or should even try, but we chose to pay attention to whom our children spent their time with and where they were. This was a significant time investment for us, but sparing our kids the wounds that so deeply affected us was completely worth it,” explains Laura. The answer was not to control, but to listen and support.

In Parenting Without Regret, Jimmy tells the story of his ten year old daughter attending a birthday party sleepover. He received a call from his daughter a couple hours into the party asking if he and Laura would come and pick her up to spare her from an uncomfortable situation. Jimmy and Laura left right away to pick up their daughter and apologized to the parents for having to pick up their daughter so early unexpectedly. Yet they knew it was worth supporting their daughter, so she knew they’d be behind her no matter what.

“Training your kids to deal with peer pressure is important, even though it may lead to rejection. It requires courage to walk away and be willing to sit alone,” writes Jimmy. Sometimes this means helping your children set boundaries and preparing them for rejection, while simultaneously providing love and support. Friendships are important, and can be both a positive and negative influence in children’s lives. Choose to invest early and train your children to have a positive impact on those around them, rather than be negatively impacted, causing scars and wounds sometimes years down the road.

Read Laura and her husband Jimmy’s book Parenting Without Regret to hear more stories, practical advice, and Christian insight into the seemingly daunting task of parenthood. You can purchase the book on our website or through Amazon.
Celebrate Family This Thanksgiving

Regardless of how ready (or not) you feel, the holiday season has begun. And although it may seem too early or as if Christmas was just a few months ago, it’s time to start preparing for two of the biggest holidays of the year. Take some time this week of Thanksgiving to be thankful, especially for those you are enjoying your Thanksgiving meal with. This year, resolve to protect family time together before the chaos of the next month begins. Jimmy and Laura Seibert write about learning to value family time in their book Parenting Without Regret. Now that their kids are grown, it makes coming home so much sweeter.

“The relationships in your family are some of the few that will last a lifetime,” writes Laura. “Though it requires effort and sacrifice, there is no substitute for raising a family that truly enjoys each other.” Jimmy and Laura chose to make family time a priority as their children were growing up, often reserving one day out of the week for a family night together.

The Seibert’s second daughter, Lauren, recalls the time she spent with family as a child. “My parents repeatedly said, ‘Everyone else may move or leave, but family will always be there for you.’ Hanging out with our family was fun and central! Our greatest memories of growing up were being together and having fun with our family. Now that we are older, my parents and siblings are my first go-to.”

In Parenting Without Regret, Jimmy and Laura tell stories of family vacations, family nights together, and traditions they formed throughout the years. Jimmy offers some practical advice for parents looking for creative ways to spend time with their kids. “To this day, our kids feel more comfortable with each other than with anybody else on the planet. Because we valued their relationships, they valued their relationships. Things like daily meals, games, praying for one another, resolving conflicts, and being on mission together created a family that truly enjoys one another.”

No matter if you’ve prioritized family time in the past or not, try setting aside some time to be together this week. Your kids will remember the time you spent, just like Lauren and her siblings. Your choices now may be creating memories and developing relationships your kids will be thankful for later. And in the end, remember that God created families and intended for these relationships to be significant and long-lasting.

“God designed family to be a place of belonging; He intended for it to be a safe place of support where each other is truly known,” Laura shares. “Live intentionally now to build deep relationships. Choose to prioritize time together over the countless other distractions. Years from now, when all your kids are grown, you will never regret the hours spent building deep friendships. Your investment today will last a lifetime.”

Read Laura and her husband Jimmy’s book Parenting Without Regret to hear more stories, practical advice, and Christian insight into the seemingly daunting task of parenthood. You can purchase the book on our website or through Amazon.


Parenting Without Regret: The Parenting Book This Generation Needs

When bestselling author and speaker Francis Chan was originally introduced to Antioch and Jimmy Seibert, he was encouraged by and drawn to Antioch’s vision and values - so much so that he traveled to Antioch Waco several times and even sent teams from his own church to partner with Antioch overseas as a part of Engage the Crisis. Chan was invited to speak at Antioch’s global mission conference, World Mandate, two years ago and plans to speak again at the conference in January 2017.

Last Spring when Jimmy’s latest book, Parenting Without Regret, was published Chan endorsed the book, and having been challenged personally, he encouraged parents to purchase the book themselves. “As a father of seven, I found myself thinking, ‘Amen!’ throughout every chapter. Lots of helpful insights that I plan on implementing in my own family. I am so grateful for the example of Jimmy and Laura as parents and Christians.”

Jimmy and Laura confessed early on that neither of them walked into marriage with a perfect experience or idea of family. Jimmy explains that no matter what your family background may be, healing is essential. And when we intentionally begin from a place of wholeness, then we can begin to parent without regret.

“We all need a work of restoration. No parenting tips will fix your brokenness. We all need to look inward first and let the Holy Spirit transform our hearts,” offers Jimmy. Because of this commitment to find Jesus in the midst of brokenness first, Jimmy and Laura set themselves apart as individuals and as parents. Rather than parenting out of their own experiences - good and bad - they chose to parent based on a Biblical foundation.

“We have found that many people tend to parent out of what they saw was wrong in their own families,” Jimmy explains in the first chapter. “Whatever your past is there has to be an agreement in marriage to not react to the past, but to lay a healthy path to the future. It was our Biblical commitment that would lay the foundation for how we would see life and do life together.”

Now many are being encouraged to follow Jimmy and Laura’s example by meeting with Jesus first, and allowing Him to do a work of wholeness and healing. “I hope that many many parents will read this book and follow their example,” Chan exhorts. “This is the exact kind of parenting book this generation needs.”

To read more about Jimmy and Laura’s parenting experiences, visit our bookstore or Amazon to purchase Parenting Without Regret: Raising Kids With Purpose, Not Perfection.
Embracing Motherhood

Ever wondered how you’re going to survive being a parent? Laura Seibert writes about her first babysitting experiences as a twelve-year-old in her book Parenting Without Regret and confesses her fear of motherhood, even after the birth of her first child. Yet after meeting with God and hearing Him speak about this great mission and privilege, Laura shares about how her perspective began to shift as she embraced her role as a parent and mother.

In a recent Inspired to Action podcast, Kat Lee encourages listeners who may identify with the feeling of fear in regards to motherhood and affirms Laura’s experience and legacy as a mother. “There are few people I could recommend with more integrity, just having watched Laura’s life (and) having seen her children grow up.” Now almost on the other side of motherhood, Laura has “this wonderful legacy in (her) kids.”

Many moms or young singles may be hesitant to admit their hesitancy toward motherhood, yet Kat explains that she “really appreciated (Laura’s) vulnerability because it’s not something we hear all that often.” It’s freeing to hear someone talk honestly about the struggle to “change your identify and really understand God’s heart for being a mom.” Laura shares about both in the book, Parenting Without Regret.

In the book and during the podcast Laura explains how she grabbed hold of her own vision for her new role as a mom. Laura confesses being inspired by successful women in careers and other stages of life, yet as she began to dialog with God about this, she sensed Him affirming her role as mother - the only mother her kids would and could ever have. “Other people can ‘mom’ your kids, but you are their mom… and nobody else can be that. That was revelation to me.”

Kat affirms this idea in the Inspired to Action podcast after hearing from Laura. She says “It’s a common thing to be a mom, but there is a richness and depth to it that I don’t think everyone gets to experience.” If moms will truly learn to lean into God during this time of redefining identity and rhythms, gain vision for their new role and allow God to speak promises of hope over their children, it will set their children up for the long haul.

In addition to gaining personal vision and revelation, Laura also shares about gaining this vision for the sake of her kids. “Kids are so discerning. They know when you don’t like being somewhere… they feel it.” After the birth of her first child, Laura determined to change the way she shared with others - especially her kids - about her job or role as a mother. She recalls changing her tone of voice and placing emphasis on the word ‘mom’, rather than replying she was “just a mom” when asked what she did for a living.

In the book, Laura shares how, in the moment, it’s rare to find glimpses of the kind of fruit your investment in your children will bear, yet the role of mother is irreplaceable. Kat ends the podcast encouraging listeners to grab hold of this truth. “As a mom… we will never be unimportant in our kids lives.” Furthermore, in any other job or sphere, our role could easily be replaced, but no one else has the privilege of being a mom to your kids, no matter how good of a parent you think you are.

Read Laura and her husband Jimmy’s book 'Parenting Without Regret' to hear more stories, practical advice, and Christian insight into the seemingly daunting task of parenthood. If you missed the Inspired to Action podcast, you can listen to it here and purchase the book on our website or through Amazon.

To read more about Jimmy and Laura's parenting experiences, visit our bookstore or Amazon to purchase Parenting Without Regret