Steve Scheibner of CharacterHealth.com recently told Glenn Beck he should have been "one of the first victims of 9/11." He was scheduled to fly American Airlines flight 11, which flew into the north tower of the World Trade Center, but was bumped at the last minute by a more senior pilot.
"Why was he allowed to survive?" Beck said on his television program Wednesday. "Well Steve has a huge family. ... One day, it dawned on him that he and his wife -- since they spent most of their time figuring out how to be parents -- they had learned a lot. And so they found their new mission, and it was a natural fit."
Scheibner and his wife have devoted their lives to improving the state of the American family, and have come up with what they call the "nine practices of the proactive parent."
"I read one of their books and I have to tell you, the wisdom that they have needs to be shared," Beck said.
Speaking on Beck's program, Scheibner shared three of the nine practices.
The first practice, he said, is to elevate virtues above feelings. He said in today's culture we are told to let our feelings guide us, rather than virtues and morals. We debate whether we can do something, instead of whether we should.
"Can you run up $17 trillion dollars in debt and still spend like a drunken sailor?" he asked. "Apparently you can. But should you do that?"
"The difference between should and shouldn't, and can and can't, is really at the heart of what we teach," he said.
The second pillar of parenting, Scheibner said, is "making God look great" and getting "plugged in" to something larger than yourself.
"The place of faith, the place of the Bible and the place of all those things in our family is absolutely critical," he said. "Over the last fifty years as a culture, as we've tried to reject God, we've tried to reject faith, we just look at one nasty, awful, negative consequence after another."
"When are we going to wake up?" he asked.
Scheibner said the third pillar of parenting is "training to be a blessing to others," and it is something parents must do if they hope to teach their children how to do it.
"You shouldn't say, 'Do as I say, not as I do.' Because if you do, you've become a hypocrite," he said. "And your children smell that a mile away -- they can't abide the hypocrisy. And by the way, when you were their age, you couldn't abide that hypocrisy either."
"One of the neat things about these nine practices is, we don't want you to lower the child to the standard," Scheibner said. "We want you to bring the child to the standard. Now how each child gets to the standard may be a little different, but ... we want you to set a family standard, and then bring the child to it."
Scheibner also discussed the difference between being a proactive and reactive parent, saying the average adult makes 35,000 decisions in a day, and each one of those decisions forces you into a proactive or reactive position.
He said highly reactive people often react to situations in anger. They are people you are afraid to approach with unfavorable news because you don't know how they will react, and they often have unrealistic expectations of people.
"Ultimately, that reactive fruit ends up being a finger-pointing blame assessor," he said. "They point a finger of blame at everybody except themselves. They don't ever want to take responsibility. Does that describe our current culture?"
Proactive parents, on the other hand, are known for being joyful, peaceful, patient, kind and courageous, he said. They are also known for having successful relationships. When something unfavorable occurs, they react in a level-headed way, rather than letting their emotions control them.
"Ultimately, every positive character quality that you can think of belongs over on that proactive tree," he said. "They become a problem solver, and that's where Megan and I are headed with these nine practices. We want to help you raise problem solvers."
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