A while back I started writing a series of posts on some of my thoughts about parenting. I kinda got sidetracked by life, but wanted to get back to some of the things I had been thinking about. In the last post I talked about the fact that society is diligently working hard to dictate how we respond to our children’s desires even going so far as to creating a science for understanding their feelings. Like darwinian evolution, behavioral science is devoid of the concept of God and focuses on self awareness, self esteem and self gratification. Do we see the root of the problem?
Behavioral science would rather have us ‘understand’ their urgings and desires instead of molding and shaping them “in the ways they should go” as we are exhorted to do in scripture. Giving our children free reign to pursue pleasure, whatever it may be, is basically giving them a free ticket into the proverbial handbasket. When we let them pursue self we are not being good parents and we certainly aren’t looking out for their benefit.
So the next I would like to explore is what specific things Christian parents can do to model Christ in a world that would rather us look through the lens of Behavioral Science and self focus.
I think the first place we need to start, is by being good role models especially when our kids are young and are watching everything around them so intently. It has been a real eye opener to watch David take in his environment, a rather sobering eye opener. As Christians, what we do and say are always being watched by society but we sometimes neglect the truth that our children are watching us even more closely so that they can imitate us. They want to play on the computer, or sweep the floor, or drive the car, or talk like Mama and Papa do. We are their first glimpse into how big people relate to each other and become thier example of how marriage relationships, friendships, being in fellowship with other Christians and relationships with their own children are supposed to work. So let us walk uprightly in the sight of God and our children, guarding our tongues and scrutinizing our actions so that in all things we glorify God.
The next thing we need to do is not to be afraid of correction. Either in correcting our children or being corrected ourselves. We all know how important it is to correct our children in love so that they will learn right from wrong, but I believe that a lot of people can undermine what they say and do by reacting badly to correction themselves. What kind of message are you sending to your children when you grumble about what your accountabilty partner is trying to help you with right after you’ve spanked them for taking cookies without asking?
I think that it ultimately boils down to where our heart is and how we respond and live. Are we focused more on our selves and reaping to the flesh instead of the spirit (Galations 5)? Are we modeling what it’s like to be follower’s of Christ? Are we good at taking God-directed correction?