What if by raising children we miss out on something very important?

by | Dec 17, 2017 | Education, Personal growth

As we have seen in the two previous articles, God does not long for people to serve him like slaves. He does not demand of us to live at the mercy of him and others around us.
He showed us by example that he himself never did that. That he defined “surrender” and “to give himself” very differently than most of us who want to serve God.

We saw that:

  • true devotion and truly giving ourselves comes with passion, identity, security, self-determination, royalty, respectability, freedom. It makes the other person an honorable recipient.
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What many of us are living has more resemblance:

  • with being at the mercy of others. This, on the other hand, comes with powerlessness, worthlessness, lack of identity and victimization while making the other the culprit.

As promised we will see today what this has to do with our way of raising kids

Reading different books written by famous Christian experts on raising children, there is something they have in common: they claim that, in order to be successful parents, one of the most important tasks we need to do is making our children obey us.
To be that authority in their lives which they submit to and respect.
I agree with them.
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However, Some of these books make us believe that without corporal punishment, without a tightly meshed authority we will lose the respect of our children and therefore our authority over them. They say we have to teach our children to obey at our first command, never talk back and be submissive to (any) authority.
In order to get there, they:

  • apply the scriptures from the book of proverb in the Bible on their little children, handling them with a harsh, rigid authority. (More about this you find here)
  • urge parents to start to discipline children at an early age – even from the age they can crawl. That, simply because toddlers can already decide to crawl in the opposite direction of where you want them to crawl.
  • teach about the importance of breaking the will of children (to be fair, they do emphasizing that we are never supposed to break the spirit of a child but the will- but more on that another time)
  • Some of these teachings talk about putting a newborn on a schedule to get nourished, “teaching” them to self-soothe, disciplining a toddler who doesn’t want to obey with this same rigidity and seriousness.

They are convinced that this is the solution to today’s problem of overwhelmed parents and children that are out of control.

However – what if it’s more about who we are – than about the measures we take to make them obey, submit and respect us?
What if by raising children that way we miss out on something very important?

Let me tell you about the approach we have as family.
Let me describe you, what we believe in, what we want teach children to be, what we want to show them trough our own lives:

To make it clear: We do want children who obey. We do want children who respect us as parents and who have respect of authority.
And our children do behave … be it at home, in school or over in a friend’s house.

  • We never did the self-soothe thing.
  • We never put our kids on a schedule to be nourished.
  • We never applied corporal punishment. We don’t even need to raise our voices to make them obey.
  • We applied a lot of “baby-bonuses” onto our toddlers under the age of two years when it came to things the older siblings had to obey.We don’t believe in raising  children
    • who fearfully submit to whatever authority,
    • who don’t have their own opinion
    • who don’t dare to tell when they think differently than we do.

    We raise our children with a destination in mind. This destination looks like this:

  • We believe in raising children with the capacity to live in true devotion.
  •  We want to see children who, as they grow older, are full of passion, identity, security, self-determination, royalty, respectability, freedom.
  • We believe in teaching children to use this freedom to love God, to serve God and to follow God in everything they do and are.
  • We believe in raising children to be a light in this world. A light can’t be dull, dim, dark and numb. A light has that shine, that glow. When you meet these kind of people, you observe something different on them the moment you meet them.
  • We believe in raising  children to make a difference, to stand up for what is right, to know who they are in Christ.
  • We believe in enabling children children to have the courage to face adversity with royality, with identity.
  • We want to see children to live their lives with passion, a passion that even setbacks and frustrations will not be able to extinguish.
  • We want to see  children to become adults  who know their weaknesses and strengths. To teach them to live a life in their destiny.

Devotion has to be a choice. Otherwise, something in fact breaks and dies in a person.

Therefore, our focus in our upbringing is not their total obedience to everything we say.
It is not, in a first place, their submission and compliance we want.
Rather, we want to prepare their hearts to be open and able to love God with all their being.

How we do that?

Well. One of our main- purpose of this website is to share our insights with you, the things we understood, applied, and have seen work.  To share with you in our weekly articles, how this can be done.
We ourselves are still in this process of learning and growing in the understanding of how this can be implemented in a childs life.
We are on our own way to be parents who live in true devotion, teaching our children with our lives.
We are learning every day, being challenged and sometimes clueless, how the perfect solution to a situation with our children may look like.
But because we know where we are heading , because we have a clear picture in mind what we want our children to become, we are growing and learning to be these parents, teaching  our children in order that they can become these adults full of passion, identity, security, self-determination, royalty, respectability, freedom in our lives.

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