Training up a child in the way I feel God wants us to is hard work…at least it is for me today.
I remember how my parents disciplined me as a child and teenager, and even though I didn’t like it then, I knew I deserved it because of the wrong choices I had made. I remember telling my mom that I hated her one time. I can recall the scene vividly. I don’t remember what I did to receive punishment, but I can remember standing in my room with Mom at my door, and I can remember the words coming out of my mouth, “I hate you!” Oh, through the years how I wished I could have taken those words back, especially even today as Mom is no longer on this earth.
I was a rebellious teenager. My parents loved me. They were probably a little more strict than some of my friends’ parents, which of course, I didn’t like at the time. But since becoming a parent myself, I’ve look backed through the years, and I’m thankful they were as strict as they were. I wasn’t a Christian growing up, as we went to a church that didn’t teach a personal relationship with Christ is what makes you a Christian. I thought I was though. I did things as a teenager that did not honor God. I wonder how my teenage years would have been different if I would have had a relationship with Christ, as Ali and Zach do now. (Thank you God!)
I realize Bill and I are probably considered the strict parents now–by our children, their friends and their friends’ parents. I don’t mean to judge here, but I also have to realize, most of their friends and their parents aren’t trying to follow God’s principles and standards. I know I fail at that miserably at times, but I seek God’s guidance and wisdom when it comes to parenting our children…and disciplining them. This is backwards, compared to the world’s principles and standards.
I don’t need or want to get caught up in all the details, but having to follow through with the consequences of one of our children making wrong choices, can be very difficult for me. I think Billl does a better job than I do in this area. I want to give in…quickly. I want to make our children happy. But making them “happy,” isn’t always what’s best for them.
Ali and Zach are great kids. I couldn’t have asked for any better. They have good hearts who love Jesus. They treat others with respect and kindness and they almost always make good choices. I thank God for them each and every day.
I love my children. I want them to be safe. I don’t want them to make the same mistakes I did at their age. I want them to have a tight relationship with the Lord, and to follow after Him, not try to follow the world, like I did at their age. I know God has a plan for both of their lives, and I know it’s going to be big. I also know God has called Bill and I to “train them up” in the way He wants them to be trained.
Parenting can be the toughest job…harder than I ever imagined. But it’s also the most rewarding!
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