- One mommy strongly shaming her little son (who was about 7 years old and innocently enjoying the ball game) because of an email from his teacher that she just picked up on her iphone.
- A dad yelling at his son (who appeared to be about 11) who was playing with his friends.
- Another dad dragging his son by the neck while he knuckled the top of his head. (I think it was supposed to be fun–at least from the dad’s view–but the kid was fighting back tears.)
Oh, I was on a roll! Then this morning, I opened my new copy of the magazine InTouch and read how Dr. Charles Stanley answered the question, WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO DISCIPLINE A CHILD WITHOUT BREAKING HIS SPIRIT?
Stanley wrote, “Let’s distinguish between two words: personhood refers to who children are deep inside, while actions refers to their behavior. Never try to break a child’s spirit, which crushes his sense of self. All discipline should target inappropriate actions without injuring his personhood.
“Here are some errors to avoid:
- Refusing to listen sends the message, ‘You’re unimportant.’ To ignore a child’s opinions, requests, and emotions is demeaning.
- Disciplining without explanation creates confusion and can make a son or daughter question your love.
- Comparing children to others or criticizing their best efforts damages the spirit.
Well, Dr. Stanley, that’s what I was trying to say to my imaginary audience while I drove home alone last night. You did it better. Thank you! So today I take the message to you: my blog audience.
On this Good Friday, I’m grateful Jesus came to give his life so that we as parents can experience God’s love, patience, forgiveness, nurture and mercy for ourselves. And although we’ll never be a perfect parent like God is, with Him as our loving Guide and Savior, we can splash grace onto our kids.
Just wondering: How do you splash grace on your kids–even when they’re trying your patience?