I was not living for Christ when my son was born, nor was I for the first 6 years of his life. When he was 4, I became a divorced, single Mom. I lived that way for 6 years. When he was 8, I met a wonderful man who 2 years later became my precious godly husband, and Father to our son.
I understand the struggles of a single Mom trying to raise a boy to be a man of God. From my own experience, I KNOW that it is an extremely difficult job, but one that MUST be done. It is first and foremost a Father's job to train his sons, this is God's perfect design for a family. Women are nothing like men, we don't and can't think like men, and shouldn't try to act like men...however, as we study the scriptures, we do learn what a man after God's own heart looks like, and that is the ground we stand on.
For the Single Mom:
Single Mom's out there, be careful that you don't raise your sons to be sissies. Don't baby them too much. Don't confuse babying with love. On the other hand, don't expect them to be the "man of the house" at the tender age of 5 either! There is a fine line here and I have seen it crossed on both ends many times.
What do you want your son to grow up to be like? Tender and loving like you, right? However, he MUST also become a MAN. A man who is devoted to his family, strong, protective, obedient to the Word of God. Study the scriptures, teach your son what God's Word says about men. Encourage him to be useful in the home (age appropriate, of course - 4 year old billy can't unclog a sink!), teach him to treat you like a lady, teach him to treat other girls and ladies as his sisters in Christ, with respect and admiration. Do not try to "become" Daddy. It is your job to set an example of what he will look for in a wife someday.
If you have a friend who has a godly husband, spend time with that family, let them know your struggles, encourage your son to see your friends husband as an example of a godly man. Don't allow yourself to believe that entering him into all the sports activities will make a man out of him - too much of that will more likely make him a self-centered, proud, young man. Teach him to read and understand the Word of God.
A warning: Do not use your ex-husband as an example of what they don't want to grow up to be. No matter the pain you feel, or the things they have done, it will be damaging to your son to use this as a example. As he grows, he will see things as they are .
To the "re-married" Mom, or any Mom in general:
It is first and foremost a Father's job to teach his sons to become men. If your husband is not active in training your sons, your first step of action is ...NOT nagging! Prayer. Pray that God would turn the heart of your husband toward your sons, to train them, even from the time of birth, to be men of God. Encourage your husband with kind words and love, encourage your sons to look up to their Father.
If, on the other hand, you have been blessed with a Man who is willing and wanting to take on his role as leader, step back and let him!!!!
*Teach your son the Word of God- being obedient to God and parents, head of his home, loving toward his wife and family (someday he will have one)
* Teach your son to be masculine - building things, using his hands, fixing things around the house, NOT Macho, but masculine, LOL
*Teach your son to respect women and girls. Boys will be boys and they are GOING to notice pretty girls. If they point out a cute looking girl, encourage them to see that God made that girl beautiful on the outside, but to look for the heart and see what's on the inside. Teach them what to look for in a godly woman, and be an example to them of the wife you would want for them someday. Remind them that someday they may have a daughter, how would they like a young man to look and think about their own daughter???
*Teach your son to own up to his mistakes. To be honest and true. Not to be proud, to be able to admit his mistakes and go from there.
*Teach your son to pray.
* Love your son, and teach him to love with gentleness and tenderness. His wife will want hugs and kisses, his daughters will need a Daddy to love them, and his sons will need a man to teach them how to be a husband. :)
Last but not least, do NOT be discouraged if you have done it all by the Word of God and things don't turn out the way you planned. Teach your children, love your children, and if they stray, pray and have faith that they will return to what they know in their hearts. God is faithful.
Have a blessed day,