Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Parents and Children

I got to do a lot of thinking this week about being a parent and disciplining. We are at a stage with Julietta that is a little hard. She is so understanding that 99% of the time it's so easy to reason with her. My church is very into the Love and Logic parenting and I have come to agree with a lot. They are so much more forgiving and loving than I feel that the Ezzo's are with their older books. The whole premise is giving your children choices that you are ok with but it teaches them to make the right choices and it also validates them as a person very early on. For instance you give them the choice of what they want to drink :milk or juice. You are fine with either but they get to pick. Same as letting them pick their clothes. In my case Julietta always wears dresses but I feel that it is okay because that is really fine with me and in the long run so what if she doesn't wear some of these cute outfits I have for her. But every now and then the choice doesn't work with Julietta. Most often if it comes down to it and I tell her you can choose to obey or you can use to get a discipline she will choose to obey. But there's that one chance that she just holds her ground. Food has become a topic that is hard as well. If it looks funny or not something that she always eats she chooses not to eat even if she's hungry. The problem is most often she will eat snacks somehow inbetween. I have found a book that I am going to go buy that is about the responsibility of the parent and about creating good eating habits for your child. So I am hoping that we can take care of that problem and also establish my part before it affects Ender and so on. I am looking forward to reading this becuase I don't want to have to bribe to eat, and I don't want to discipline over food either. But I'm off on a bunny trail. I feel that we are coming to a point in her life that spanking should be on the way out. I feel that she understands enough that physical discipline should stop soon. It should be only used for very strong boughts of rebellion and straight up defiance. I also think it should be a last resort. She should (and all our other kids) be given the choice to change her actions before that severe of a discipline. Saying that I know that there are still situations that will call for immediate discipline if her safetly is at risk that that will still be a spanking for a while I'm sure.
I know that there are a lot of Christians who believe that spanking is the only and the right way. I do not beleive that this is what Christ is speaking about when he talks about not sparing the rod. I believe that it is done in love and it is more about discipline and guiding of your children than of actual physical punishment. It has been documented and studied that physical discipline can and will cause agression and possible violent actions later in life. Also a child gets to the point where they can break and they will begin to resent you instead of actually learning out of love that what they are doing is wrong. So, all this to say is I'm not against spanking as a whole but I think some parents can take it to an extreme. I also think that there is a age to cut it out and use other forms of discipline. I think my last spanking was around 5 or 6. I have no resentment or embarassment about my disciplines in that area. I also think that sometimes parents can take it to the extreme and it can fastly become a form of abuse. A child should never NEVER be spanked or hit anywhere other than their butt. It should always be done in love as well. If a parent is angry and they hit they are twice as more likely to hit harder than they would if they weren't angry.
Anyway, it just breaks my heart to hear about children who learn to live in fear of the punishment and never learn to obey and respect out of love. A home should be a place where a child feels like they can mess up and know that their parents love them and will help them through their difficult times, not a place where they are so scared to mess up because they will be punished so severely.Should a child ever become afriad of the parents hand? I think not. Is this unconditional love? Aren't we as parents supposed to emulate Christ to our children? Do we fear Christ because we are scared of what He'll do to us, or do we fear Him because we respect Him so much and we know we are so loved and what He has done for us?
I know this is a hot topic but just thinking about it this week I just wanted to put it in writing that I never EVER want my children to fear Randall's or mine hand. They should never be afriad to mess up in front of us because of what will come to them. They should know that when we discipline it is because we love them and because sometimes we all have to get put back on the straight path. Discipline is to teach and train our children in the way of the Lord, it is not to make them become who we want them to be and to "beat" the bad out of them.
It literally hurts my heart and makes me want to cry thinking about children who do not live with love but live in fear.


  1. A lot of my friends with older children have recommended Shepherding a Child's Heart by Tedd Tripp and Don't Make Me Count to Three by Ginger Plowman. I haven't read either yet, but apparently many people like them both.

  2. Shepherding a Childs Heart is awesome! I love that book. I am looking into purchasing Raising Girls by DR.Dobson. I love him and I think we need to read something to encourage us as we pursue raising a godly, well behaved, mannered child. Lillian is going through a stage right now and I know I could always learn more.

    Good luck with your endeavors! Discipline is tough!! But well worth it. Hugs

  3. I read Dr. Dobson's Raising Boys and it was great too! I guess you need to buy both!

  4. They are good books. I'd recommend Parenting with Love and Logic as well. It is wonderful I think :)

  5. Ginger maybe it's the age with the girls? I really think because they understand so much we are at the age where they want to start gambling with saying no and wondering where it'll get them! Is that what yours is doing?

  6. Amen! A trust in Christ and an understanding of his discipline with us is key to raising your family.

  7. Not that I believe spanking is right in all situations, but I think you should know that the Bible literally DOES mean ROD. Proverbs 23:13-14

    13Withhold not correction from the child: for if thou beatest him with the rod, he shall not die.

    14Thou shalt beat him with the rod, and shalt deliver his soul from hell.

    Look up the Greek and it means (www.blueletterbible.org):

    1) rod, staff, branch, offshoot, club, sceptre, tribe

    a) rod, staff

    b) shaft (of spear, dart)

    c) club (of shepherd's implement)

    d) truncheon, sceptre (mark of authority)

    God loves us but we are to fear and reverence Him!

  8. To clarify Sarah I didn't say it didn't mean a rod, I mean it doesn't mean to beat them into submission by using any physical discipline you want. I said that discipline should be done in love and with the lesson of teaching.

  9. Well it does say "beat." I do agree with you.. I agree it should be out of love. God disciplines us out of love, and so we should do the same with our kids. I totally agree love is the key, I just think its wrong to say the Bible does not literally mean a physical action of "spanking".. that's all.

  10. Amy,
    Kourtney has the book you're referring to about eating habits. I am sure she'd let you borrow it vs. having to buy it. i read it and its great!!!