Every Parent Needs a “Just One More Thing” List Close By

We make a lot of lists in our lives:

  • Grocery lists
  • “Stuff to pack for vacation” lists
  • Bucket lists
  • Christmas gift lists
  • “Things to do today” lists“
  • Things we want to see and do while we’re visiting Paris… or Italy… or New York City” lists
One of Our Many Lists
One of Our Many Lists

One of the most important lists a parent can make is the list of things they want to make sure their kids know before they leave home to go out into the world on their own. We call it a “Just one more thing…” list.

Related Post: One of The Best Things We Did Before Our Kids Left Home

As our kids were growing up, there were a lot of things we wanted them to learn. Sometimes the teaching came directly from us, from conversations or family nights or just the example of our lives. Sometimes it came from school or Mr. Rogers or Sunday School or books or Youth Pastors or whatever.

Too Important to Leave to Chance

When the high school years hit and we realized our kids would soon be leaving home, we got really serious about our “Just One More Thing” list. We didn’t want to just assume that they understood and remembered all those things we had wanted them to learn. So we came up with our list of the most important things we wanted to cover one more time before they headed out into the world.

Our “Just One More Thing” List

Here are a few of the topics that made our list for our kids:

  • The bottom line about God and Jesus and the Bible
  • Spiritual gifts
  • Church
  • Loving God and loving others – what does that look like?
  • Friendships
  • Dating & Marriage
  • Love and sex
  • Alcohol
  • Money and budgeting
  • Pornography
  • Convictions
  • Doing your best

During their senior years we covered one topic at a time over late Saturday morning breakfasts. Not a lecture, but a discussion about practical things that they would be dealing with on their own after they left home.

A Family Project that Became a Book

Over the years, as other parents heard about what we had done with our kids, they asked us for copies of the stuff we put together so they could use it with their kids. Eventually we ended up writing a book that covered thirty-one topics that could be helpful for any parent to use with their kids before they leave home. The following topics can be found in Just One More Thing… Before You Leave Home.

Loving God
Love and Sex
Church Involvement
Resolving Conflict
Time Use
God’s Word

Thirty-one topics that can help you help your kids be ready to head out into the world on their own. The book is meant to be a resource to help you do just that. But we would encourage you to also come up with some of the other things that may be important to you and your family. Particularly those that have to do with religious beliefs or practices.

Don’t just assume that your kids “got” the things that you want them to know. Intentionally find time for some conversations about the topics that are important to you. Come up with your own list or start with the simple chapters in Just One More Thing… Before You Leave Home.

by Dave Gudgel