We are blessed to have been able to get hold of books like The Strong Willed Child by James Dobson, On Becoming Babywise by Gary Ezzo, Standing Tall by Steve Farrar, et.al., at the times that we needed them. The hubby and I read Standing Tall and On Becoming Babywise just before I gave birth to our son and The Strong Willed Child, during the threat of the terrible twos. We officially call it a “threat,” because it really only lasted a couple of months, tops. The Lord clearly led us to this book to have us figure out how to handle that critical period of raising a child.
Sure it was a battle of the wills, the most frustrating time ever. But the Lord led us to the Biblical way of handling that phase and now we enjoy the benefits of having a loving and secure child who not only respects authority, but is also a joy to live with. Oh no, he is not all bright and shiny, he has his days as well. But nothing that a sincere talk cannot handle. He knows who is in charge and he knows that he is loved.
The war between attachment parenting and the other extreme was at its peek when I gave birth to our son. But I knew that as a family, we did not have to conform to either of the two. We listened to both sides and figured out from there which is extreme, which is not and decided to be led by no less than God himself through his Word.
Here is another parenting insight from Biblical Parenting. Be blessed and may we impact the lives of our children the way the Lord has intended us to.
Many parents use a simple behavior modification approach to raise their children. If you get your homework done, then you can go out and play. If you clean your room, then you can watch a video. Unfortunately children trained this way often develop a “What’s in it for me?” mentality. “If I don’t get something out of it, why should I obey?”
God is concerned with more than behavior. He’s interested in the heart. The heart contains motivations, emotions, convictions, and values. A heart-based approach to parenting looks deeper. Parents still require children to finish their homework and clean up their rooms but it’s the inner motivation and character that they’re addressing.
A heart-based approach shares values and reasons behind rules. It requires more dialogue, helping children understand how their hearts are resistant and need to develop cooperation. A heart-based approach is firm but also relational. It’s a mindset on the part of parents that looks for heart moments that then bring about significant change.
As you consider your children, remember the words that God said to Samuel, “Man looks at the outward appearance but the Lord looks on the heart.”
This concept is explained more fully of the book, Parenting is Heart Work, by Dr. Scott Turansky and Joanne Miller, RN, BSN.