Sunday, July 19, 2009

Child Obedience

This is something I never thought about until a recent conversation with Ryan’s mom and sister-in-law, Kim. Someday, I know I will get frustrated with my child’s disobedience, and I want to remember this perspective.

Disciplining my children will be a hard and difficult job. I have no doubt about that and I don’t claim to be the perfect parent. However, I have learned one thing from watching many of our friends parent their children, and that is that when disciplining your children, you must remain consistent. If I demand a certain behavior of my children, my word is law and I need to stick to what I say no matter how tired I am, how lazy I want to be, or how inconvenient it may be for me. Even if it is a “stupid” rule that should never have been made and I recognize that, I still need to expect my children to follow what I say.

I have believed all of that for many years. But I never realized that my kids need to be obedient, because someday their lives may depend on it.

The example we talked about was if I say “STOP,” they must do what I say. It could be to keep them safe from an animal or from being hit by a car in the street. It could very well come down to saving their lives, and that is well worth sticking to my guns rather than taking the more convenient and lenient route of childrearing.

1 comment:

Corinne Doughan said...

Discipline is topic that I could go on and on about ...

You hit the nail right on the head when talking about discipline/obedience being in the best interest of your child's safety.

I've also been challenged by the spiritual aspects of discipline too. Discipline is to correct wrong behavior, but it's also to correct wrong motives ... which is really a "heart issue" ... a bigger and more challenging issue than just correcting behavior ... I should know because I STILL have "heart issues" that God continually corrects and disciplines me for.

Anyway, like I said I could go on and on ...

Here are a few books I've read on Christian discipline if you're interested:

Shepherding a Child's Heart by Ted Tripp

Teach Them Diligently: How to Use the Scriptures in Child Training by Lou Priolo

I'm also planning on reading "Grace Based Parenting" too ... I've heard lots of good things about it.