Two Part

Being a parent has nothing to do with deserving the position. I didn't achieve parenthood because I was that good at life and God bestowed my children upon me as a reward. I can't earn parenthood. It's something that deserving and undeserving get regardless of their ranking in life.

I think sometimes children have a belief that parents should be perfect, flawless, because they're a parent they should know everything that is correct. False. But in their defense it's because most parents pretend that they do, they aren't upfront and honest in the struggles they face in life. They don't teach their children how to deal with imperfections like apologizing for behavior that's unacceptable and asking forgiveness. I know one of my largest struggles is praying with my children, probably out of rebellion. Although I don't remember it ever being a big thing in our household when I grew up either, except at bedtime. I'm not perfect and I never want my kids to believe that I am not fully aware of that and I'm working on it with God's help.

I think some parents believe that they should be treated with respect because of their position, not because of their relationship. That may be true biblically, but only comes with the relationship you have with your children that follows biblical standards. Nothing in the bible is to be taken on it's own. All promises start with if you and end with then I will. It's two part. As a parent you are responsible first, not because of position or authority, or rules, or laws, or expectations, but because that's how God designed it.

While I require respect from my children I also require it of myself in treatment of them. When I see myself treating them with disrespect of their person-hood I feel guilty and ashamed and try to remedy my behavior immediately. Through parenting my first and second child I used the spanking method, then became aware that neither of us were always able to spank in the correct frame of heart, without anger. And I became ashamed that instead of training my kids it was actually only trying to get their obedience using fear and intimidation tactics. That isn't the heart of God, He doesn't want us to obey out of fear but out of love and relationship.

Using fear and intimidation will only lead to rebellion, because it's offensive to our spirits. I know my children are intelligent beings and pushing them to follow me or they'll be punished isn't something an intelligent person would do. It certainly isn't something I did which is why as an adult I still struggle with rebellion. Anything that reminds me of my mother automatically triggers my rebellious response because there was no two part relationship between her and I. She used fear and intimidation to push me into a biblical worldview. She never sat down and had actual conversations with me about her why in any form, there was never a why for anything she required of me. And it left me with a whole lot of questions that would never be answered.

Sharing my struggle with my kids is important to me because I want them to know my heart and the heart behind why I believe God's way is the right way. I don't want them following God simply because I said so because when they're adults (and even possibly right now) it won't be enough.

These are thoughts I carry around with me daily. I'm still trying to figure out the balance of it all. I believe in the biblical view of spanking, I just know that if we can't do it with the heart of God then it will only be destructive. in the right way because just having them obey rules doesn't make them functioning adults that will know how to make good decisions when I'm not around. And giving them the "correct biblical" answers to every question will never work for real life applications, I know from experience. Life will give us far more complex questions than you can simply answer from any Sunday School text book.

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