Sunday, April 23, 2017

Daily Devotion: Consider Your Punishment

Bible Reading: Hebrews 12:1-10

Key Verse: Verse 9 - “Furthermore we have had fathers of our flesh which corrected us, and we gave them reverence: shall we not much rather be in subjection unto the Father of spirits, and live?"

Key Words: Furthermore we have had fathers of our flesh which corrected us

All of our lives we learn through the penalties of our mistakes. A child who breaks their favorite toy while having a temper tantrum learns that he has punished himself. A child who is denied a privilege because of disobedience will think twice before disobeying again. Children must learn that there are consequences for misbehavior.

Bible teaching makes it clear that misbehavior must be dealt with (Leviticus 26:41, Lamentations 3:39). Why, even God chastens those whom He loves (Hebrews 12:6). Dads are exhorted not to spare the rod, but at the same time the Christian home is pictured as a happy place with children the crowning joy of the parents. How can the parent discipline so that their children are really the crowning joy? Let me suggest the following.

First of all, parents should guard against a permissive lifestyle in their children; but on the other hand, it is equally as dangerous for parents to be overly strict (all law and no grace). Too severe a punishment will lead to your child lying, will produce ungodly fear, and cause your child to develop nervous habits. Too strict a discipline can make your child docile but they may not be happy. Mom, Dad, respect is earned, not legislated. It is cruel to threaten your children. Remember, Dad, we are not to provoke our children to wrath (Ephesians 6:4).

Secondly, as a parent, I would not only concern myself with punishing my child, but I should also consider what punishment does not achieve.

a) It does not identify the cause of misbehavior.
b) It does not show or teach a better way.

Proverbs 22:6 tells us to train our children. Punishment within itself is not training.

Thirdly, after you have disciplined your child, they need to know you love them. A reassuring hug and a “I love you and you are my crowning joy” would not hurt. Again, may God bless you as you raise your children for God’s glory.

What to do:
✞ All discipline should be motivated by love for your child, not anger against them. ✞Discipline is needed, but so are hugs

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