This post was written by contributor Lara Williams.
Confession. Lately, we haven’t been consistent in discipline. And it’s caused…mayhem. OK, maybe that’s a strong word but really, our kids seem whiny-er and less obedient. Meanwhile we’re more frustrated and short-tempered. It’s felt messy.
But because God is awesome and love and wants what’s best for our family, He faithfully convicted my husband and I. He challenged us to get on the same page and start fresh. Because (just like alllll the books teach) consistency in parenting nurtures safety and trust in the home. And safety and trust breeds greater obedience.
So here are a few questions God posed to our spirits for us to consider with Him.
What’s distracting you?
Often, lack of consistency births from living distracted. *Ahem.* Distractions invade. From emails to texts to phone calls to to-do lists — it’s so easy to lose perspective.
The solution to living distracted lives: pray that God would reveal distractions and then set clear boundaries. Also, restate priorities.
What’s going to be the most effective discipline strategy for your family?
I fail at charts. Seriously. I forget to add stickers or give that gold coin, hence inconsistency. Then my husband may go a totally different discipline route once he gets home from work, which means inconsistency between us as parents.
So we decided to use “currency.” Without any warnings, we simply impose or take away the thing (the currency) that most irritates each individual child at the moment of offense. There’s no hollering or negotiating. Just quick, reasonable, natural consequence to their behavior…all in love.
The solution to inconsistency: Determine in prayer what will be the primary discipline strategy in your home and, through His empowering, stick with it.
Who’s the One who ultimately opens their hearts to My ways?
I’ve written about this before, but we as parents will fail. We aren’t going to do it perfectly. So we simply confess and rest in God’s faithful forgiveness. Then we move forward in grace.
His grace doesn’t give us license to sin as parents. But it does relieve the pressure we often place upon ourselves to be a perfect mom. We won’t be. We can’t be. But thankfully our kids’ transformation into Christ followers doesn’t rest on our shoulders. He’s the One who opens eyes and moves hearts. Our call is to train (imperfectly) and believe Him to complete the work He begins.
The solution to guilt and unbelief: Make a list of Scriptures that point to God as the forgiver and the soul-healer. Repeat and believe when tempted to lay in a pool of guilt. Pray in faith for the salvation of our children.
To create the home environment that my husband and I want, we needed a revamping. We needed to get on the same discipline page and purposefully set boundaries on the things that can distract.
Then after we imperfectly follow through with the things God has led us to do, we keep on resting and resting in His great, matchless grace.
How goes your discipline strategy? Click here to chat about it in the comments.Leave a Comment