I’d like to say I applied all the proverbs I’m going to list, but I wasn’t always consistent. My three children were all strong-willed. (I wonder where they got that . . .) There were times when I considered using duct tape. By the grace of God, they all survived. And now, hee-hee, they all have strong-willed children of their own. (I wonder how that happened . . .)
Even God had to deal with rebellious children. Adam and Eve had the perfect parent, perfect environment, perfect circumstances—and they still messed up. All that to remind you that you and your children are imperfect.
But here are some important proverbs for parents to remember:
“Discipline your children while there is hope. If you don’t, you will ruin their lives.” (And possibly yours as well.)
“Even children are known by the way they act, whether their conduct is pure and right.” (A child’s behavior earns a reputation. What kind of reputation do you want your child to have?)
“Teach your children to choose the right path, and when they are older, they will remain upon it.” (Be a good example for them to follow.)
“Don’t fail to correct your children. They won’t die if you spank them. Physical discipline may well save them from death.” (God doesn’t tell us to beat or abuse our children; discipline is always to protect, train, and love our children.)
“To discipline and reprimand a child produces wisdom, but a mother is disgraced by an undisciplined child.” (We’ve all been in situations where children have been allowed to “run wild.” Fun for everyone, isn’t it?)
“Discipline your children, and they will give you happiness and peace of mind.” (After the teen years. Often after they have children of their own.)
Teaching a child to love God and love others is not easy. It takes hard work, diligence, and putting the needs of your child ahead of yourself. And even when you do, there are no guarantees. Love—God’s kind of love—is a high calling best done on your knees.