So today I was on the phone with a great friend and we were discussing the recent “rebellious attitude” and I do mean “rebellious” that we are both experiencing with one of our children. Here’s an example of what I mean:
Me: “Please go put your shoes away.”
Child: “Ok, I will when I’m done with this show, game, craft…(you get the idea)
Me: “No, you need to do it now, because I asked you now. All I should be hearing right now is a ‘yes mom’. So let me hear you say ‘yes mom’ and go and do what I asked”
Child: “I don’t like saying ‘yes mom,’ can’t I just say ‘ok’ or ‘yeah’” (child still playing)
Me: “I am sick and tired of arguing with you every time I ask you to do something. You know that this behavior does not honor God or me. Do you understand?” (child is not even looking at me in the face anymore and I’m on the verge of “losing it!”)
Child: “Hold on, I’m almost done with this (show, game, craft) and then I’ll do it.
Me: “I’m not going to ‘hold on,’ you are going to pick-up your shoes right now while I go fold the laundry.”
10 min. later my child is outside riding bikes and shoes have not been touched. I take a deep breath and think about what I’m going to say & do.
I have thought about this and learned a couple things since I’ve been dealing with this blatant disobedience over the last several weeks.
It’s time to stop “talking” and start doing. When there is not immediate obedience then there is an immediate consequence which requires far fewer words and will teach my points for me vs. me trying to explain something to a child for 10 minutes. (I’m reminded about Adam & Eve in the garden. God issued immediate consequences for their disobedience. He didn’t wait until they disobeyed 3 times, or lecture them; reminding them of what He said and talking on & on)
I have also reminded myself that if I’m going to use scripture to correct (which I do often) then I also need to use scripture to encourage and train in righteousness. (which I don’t do as much).
“All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.” 2 Timothy 3:16-17
I’m thankful that God has given us so many examples in His Word because I sure need the encouragement and wisdom as my husband & I navigate parenting at every age!
As for my disobedient child, well she will be without a thing to play with or crafts to make or movies to watch if she continues in her disobedience. I’m praying it doesn’t have to get to that, but I’m willing if that’s what it requires for her.
God says in Deuteronomy 5:16
“Honor your father and your mother, as the Lord your God has commanded you, so that you may live long and that it may go well with you in the land the Lord your God is giving you.” (emphasis added)
I take God at His Word, and I want it to go well for my children and desire that they would live long; therefore, I consequently need to train them in such a way that they honor their father and mother. God help me!