It might be the latest iPhone … or that new pair of jeans … or the latest gadget … or that bag of lollies in the supermarket … either way your child just HAS to have it. Well, if you’re a parent like me … you’ve probably discovered that what your child WANTS and what your child NEEDS are often very different.
The first thing to understand is that your child may not yet have learnt to distinguish between wants and needs.
After all … they are seeing it everywhere … the latest thing comes on the tele, or they see a friend with something new. This is where you can sit down with them … and if they are little … go through a magazine … cut out pictures of wants and pictures of needs, and put them in separate columns on a page.
As they grow older … explain to them that the reason why companies promote their latest product on TV is because they are wanting you to purchase more of their product, to make money.
Explain to them the dangers of an entitlement mentality … that there is a cost for everything … that they are not entitled to more stuff … and that the more you have … the more you will want.
Explain to them the power of learning to be content with what they have, but always grateful for anything received. Teach them how to budget … how to honour God with finance … and how to prioritise important things over wants. It says in Heb 13:5 “Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said, “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.”