(J. R. Miller, "Home-Making" 1882)
Parents! You are fashioning the destinies of immortal souls!
What we want to do with our children, is not merely to control them and keep them in order—but to implant true principles deep in their hearts which shall rule their whole lives; to shape their character from within into Christlike beauty, and to make of them noble men and women, strong for battle of life. They are to be trained rather than governed. Growth of character, not merely good behavior—is the object of all home governing and teaching. Therefore the home influence is far more important than the home laws; and the parents' lives are of more significance than their teachings. Whatever may be done in the way of governing, teaching or training—theories are not half as important as the parents' lives. They may teach the most beautiful things—but if the child does not see these things modeled in the life of the parent—he will not consider them important enough to be adopted in his own life.