‘If you refuse to discipline your children, it proves you don’t love them.’ Proverbs 13:24 NLT
As a parent, there are three things you owe your child. The first is: affection. The Bible says if you love your child you’ll discipline them. And you’ll do it in love, and not anger. Don’t buy into the idea that good parents don’t discipline their children because they ‘love them too much’.
The truth is, if you don’t discipline your child it’s not because you love them too much, it’s because you love yourself too much. A Gallup poll revealed that more than 90 per cent of graduating high school seniors wished their parents and teachers had loved them enough to discipline them more and require more of them. Like water, we follow the path of least resistance. It’s much easier to let things slide, avoid confrontation, stick your head in the sand, and hope things will get better, than it is to suffer the pain of disciplining a child you love. Keep in mind, however, that the only person who ever got anywhere by letting something slide was a trombone player.
Seriously, the Bible says, ‘Whom the Lord loves He corrects, just as a father the son in whom he delights.’ (Proverbs 3:12 NKJV) Let that sink in! The greatest and wisest father of all is God. He not only loves, He is love. Yet we read here that our loving God is one who disciplines. Any parent who refuses to discipline their child is really saying they are a better parent than God. Love always does what is best for the other person. And there are times when love demands discipline and training.
SoulFood: Deut 11–13, Matt 5:38–48, Ps 37: 25–31, Prov 12:1–3
The Word for Today is authored by Bob and Debby Gass and published under licence from UCB International Copyright © 2017
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