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Should Parenting Require a License?

February 19, 2016
By Dr. P. Ogborne

The momentum is growing and so is the lingo. Parents are being labelled as to their parenting style. Terms such as “drill sergeant”, “helicopter”, “pampering” and the latest “snowplow”, are all used to describe how parents negotiate the parenting issues that they face. This very difficult task comes to adults who are more often than not, totally unprepared for the task ahead of them. Where is the official document that says you are allowed to parent? I love getting a piece of paper that says I have mastered a particular activity. When I was 16, the first license to occupy my wallet was a driver’s license. The open highways before me and the freedom it brought were exhilarating. A few million miles later, I still love the feel of getting behind the wheel. I later upgraded to a school bus license to engage myself in a new field of road travel. I wrote the test for a boat license then moved on to a gun license, which gave me access to a hunting license. I added a fishing license and when I couldn’t catch any fish, I obtained my scuba license so I could check the fish out up close and personal.

I studied to write my “Being a Dad “license and realized there is no such thing. How could that be? One of the toughest activities on this planet is being a father (or mother), and yet there are no licenses to say you passed the course, or aced the exam or even qualified to raise a human being.


If you find yourself looking to study up on this profession, let me give you a syllabus of good resources that will make you plan and implement this noble quest. Above all else, the Bible gives us some Godly advice that will set the overall boundaries. Many good books have been written from a biblical perspective about parenting, but of note would be:  Intentional Parenting by Tad Thompson, What the Bible says About Parenting by John MacArthur, and Gospel-Powered Parenting by W. Farley.

Maybe the first article under your belt should be from MacLean’s magazine. In the January 2016 edition, the article highlights Leonard Sax’s latest book, The Collapse of Parenting. The insights are poignant and many. A gem is found in the quote, “For every expert parents call, they also consult with the virtual wise man, Google. That almost never helps.” (LINK)

Love and Logic – this organization has it all – CD’s , books, DVD’s and seminars. There are resources for parents and teachers that are so logical it begs the comment, “why didn’t I try this before”.  (LINK)

Christian School Journal - Dr. Mosbacher is a gifted Christian writer and school headmaster that identifies the issues and needs of school aged children. Especially poignant is his blog entitled “Protect, Pamper, or Prepare?”  (LINK)

Paul David Tripp has an excellent Christian family DVD series entitled “Getting to the Heart of Parenting”- three hours of amazing insights into family life.  (LINK)   Continue this journey with another series by Danny Silk called “Loving Our Kids on Purpose”  (LINK)

Finally, Leonard Sax has two books out that deal with the uniqueness of boys and girls. Boys Adrift and Girls on the Edge are both fascinating reads.   (LINK)

All this study may not get you a license to parent, but it will instill some basic, yet vital, knowledge that will assist you in raising up these little ones to be fruitful and happy members of our society. Even more importantly, raise them up in a godly fashion that will lead them into a personal relationship with their heavenly Father.