Inspirational Readings for Parents

Parenting is darn hard work, and sometimes it soothes the heart and soul to read what others who came before us had to say about the journey of parenthood. I hope that you find these inspirational readings for parents useful on your parenting path as well.


Bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh…. Genesis 2:23

With all beings and all things we shall be as relatives. – Sioux Indian

“I love you,”said a great mother. “I love you for what you are knowing so well what you are. And I love you more yet, child, deeper yet than ever child, for what you are going to be, knowing so well you are going far, knowing your great works are ahead, ahead and beyond, yonder and far over yet.”  – Carl Sandburg

Perhaps the greatest social service that can be rendered by anybody to the country and to mankind is to bring up a family.
– George Bernard Shaw

My mother had a great deal of trouble with me, but I think she enjoyed it. – Mark Twain

Your children are not your children. They are the sons and daughters of Life’s longing for itself. – Kahill Gibran

Peace, like charity, begins at home. – Source Unknown

It is in the shelter of each other that the people live. – Irish Proverb

God, please help me not to be so busy helping other people’s children that I neglect my own. – Marian Wright Edelman

A joyful heart filled with love is everywhere at home. – Meister Eckhart

To have parents who love each other is the best gift that children can have. – Damaris Parker-Rhodes

Dear God: Thank you for my baby brother but what I prayed for was a puppy. – Joyce, (age 8) from Children’s Letters to God, 1991

Children will not remember you for the material things you provided but for the feeling that you cherished them.
– Richard L. Evans

It is a long baptism into the sea of humankind, my daughter. Better immersion than to live untouched. – Tillie Olsen

I do not know my daddy. Mamma says I have his eyes and grin and something else she doesn’t want to talk about.
– Child, age 8, to K.Lee, 1987

The family….that dear octopus from whose tentacles we never quite escape nor, in our inmost hearts, ever quite wish to.
– Dodie Smith

I will love you no matter what. I will love you if you are stupid, if you slip and fall on your face, if you do the wrong thing, if you make mistakes, if you behave like a human being, I will love you no matter what. – Leo Buscaglia

Smile at each other, smile at your wife, smile at your husband, smile at your children, smile at each other – it doesn’t matter who it is – and that will help you to grow up in greater love for each other. – Mother Teresa

Children do not care how much you know, until they know how much you care. – Source Unknown Love doesn’t just sit there, like a stone; it has to be made, like bread, remade all the time, made new. – Ursula K. Leguin

Home is the place you go to where they have to take you in. – From Death of the Hired Hand, By Robert Frost

Our lives are shaped by those who love us, and by those who refuse to love us. – Anonymous

Who loves the rain,/And loves his home,/And looks on life with quiet eyes./Him will I follow through the storm,/And at his hearth-fire keep me warm;/Nor hell nor heaven shall that soul surprise who loves the rain,/And loves his home,/And looks on life with quiet eyes. – Francis Shaw

Now I lay me down to sleep and pray to God my soul to keep. If I should die before I wake I pray to God my toys to take, so none of the other kids will get them. – Shel Silverstein

Making the decision to have a child – it’s momentous. It is to decide forever to have your heart go walking around outside your body. – Elizabeth Stone

He who raises a child is to be called its father, not the man who only gave it birth. – Midrash, Exodus Rabbah, 46:5

Once his brother asked Ryoken to visit his house and speak with his delinquent son. Ryoken came but did not say a word of admonition to the boy. He stayed overnight and prepared to leave the next morning. As the wayward nephew was lacing up Ryoken’s sandals, he felt a drop of warm water. Glancing up, he saw Ryoken looking down on him, his eyes full of tears. Ryoken then returned home, and the nephew changed for the better. – John Stevens, One Rose, One Bowl

Nothing has a stronger influence psychologically on their environment, and especially on their children, than the unlived life of the parents. – Carl Jung

What the mother sings to the cradle goes all the way down to the coffin. – Source Unknown

Please continue to look at your children as valuable treasures. Honor them and yourself. – Bernie Siegel

Your children are always your babies, even if they have gray hair. – Janet Leigh

(All Selections compiled by Kevin Lee)

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