What a whirlwind of comments, shared convictions and discussion over this big issue of child-discipline. The bottom line (no pun intended), is, we must walk by faith in our own homes, trusting in the guidance and wisdom of the Holy Spirit to show us every day how to best relate to our children. Our goal is to reach their hearts with the messages that are on His heart, and to transfer to them an understanding of his Kingdom and our stewardship as His children to be stewards of that message. I will not be responding to any more comments or posts about this as I will be occupied with our conference. But thanks so much for all who participated!
Just because of the sheer volume of responses I have received, I know that many parents are engaged in this great calling--and that is very encouraging. In a time when children have often been pushed aside and left to fend for themselves, it is heartening to see that so many are passionate about the "raising" of their children.
On to Raleigh
I am traveling right now and will probably be mostly absent for a few days, though I am inclined to throwing in some thoughts here and there. I am in Raleigh for another Mom Heart Conference and would so appreciate your prayers for our family as we serve the moms here.
On the way to my friend's home from the airport last night, my friend and I were chatting and sharing stories from the past couple of days. She was sharing about her own groups that she was teaching, and women who were responding, and their stories. Telling the story of a sweet mom who would be with us, captured the attention of my girls.
When we got to her house, Joy, who had been riding in the back seat, came to my bedroom and shared her heart.
"Mom, when I think about how my life has been most influenced, and I see you and Miss Lynn and others extending truth and encouragement to so many, it really makes me see that I want to be a teacher, too, and pass on knowledge, understanding and truth. I want to influence other's lives personally in the same way."
The way we live life intentionally speaks volumes to our children. When we do not even really think they are listening, the small conversations, the friendships, the life shared is going into their souls. They do pick up our own commitments and convictions when their own soul's have been filled and then they watch our lives and it whets their appetites. What a blessing to see the Holy Spirit moving in and amongst our normal moments of life and conversation.
I leave you with a quote from one of my favorite writers on the subject of influencing children.
"How many parents there are … who are readier to provide playthings for their children than to share the delights of their children with those playthings; readier to set their children to knowledge-seeking, than to have a part in their children’s surprises and enjoyments of knowledge-attaining; readier to make good, as far as they can, all losses to their children, than to grieve with their children over those losses. And what a loss of power to those parents as parents, is this lack of sympathy with their children as children."
Henry Clay Trumbull, Hints on Child Training (1890)