Bringing Out the Winner In Your Child

Cultivating Common Sense


Recently, a young man from the Boys’ Ranch helped me with a couple of projects in our yard. As we were working in the garage, we passed by a stack of manuals that were sitting on my workbench. He asked, “What are those?” Piled about six inches high were manuals, parts lists and operational booklets for our lawnmower, grill, weed eater and various other yard tools. I stopped what I was doing, looked at him, and said, “As you grow up, you need to keep every instruction book and operational manual for each individual machine or tool that you have. You never know when you may need them.”

Later that day, it hit me that what I had given him was not a deep spiritual truth or a profound piece of wisdom—but simply a “nugget” to help him grow into being a fine man, husband and father. As parents, we sometimes get so wrapped up in making sure that we give off the overall appearance that we have done a “great” job raising our children, by providing the best education, clothes, degrees, cars or whatever we think is “SO” important, that we neglect a very crucial and necessary characteristic within our child’s heart – Common Sense. This key ingredient, missing in so many children (and adults), CAN be taught. It just takes practice and consistency. God’s word is the BEST place I know to start to develop common sense. The book of Proverbs is a great place to begin, and can be a guide for every day life. Check it out!


-John Croyle

Executive Director, Big Oak Ranch

Author, Who You Are/Defying the Circumstances that Define Us, Bringing Out the Winner in Your Child, The Two Minute Drill to Manhood and Raising a Princess,

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