Summary: How God orders us to discipline because He treasures children and what we can do about it.
Good news about discipling children
by Andrew Chan Senior Pastor, PBC, Vancouver, BC
Being a parent changes everything. But being a parent also changes with each baby. Here are some of the ways having a second and third child is different from having your first.
1) Your Clothes
1st baby: You begin wearing maternity clothes as soon as your OB/GYN confirms your pregnancy.
2nd baby: You wear your regular clothes for as long as possible.
3rd baby: Your maternity clothes ARE your regular clothes.
2) Preparing for the Birth
1st baby: You practice your breathing religiously.
2nd baby: You don’t bother practicing because you remember that last time, breathing didn’t do a thing.
3rd baby: You ask for an epidural in your 8th month.
3) The Nursery
1st baby: You pre-wash your newborn’s clothes, color-coordinate them, and fold them neatly in the baby’s little bureau.
2nd baby: You check to make sure that the clothes are clean and discard only the ones with the darkest stains.
3rd baby: Boys can wear pink, can’t they?
1st baby: At the first sign of distress - a whimper, a frown-you pick up the baby.
2nd baby: You pick the baby up when her wails threaten to wake your firstborn.
3rd baby: You teach your 3-year-old how to rewind the mechanical swing.
1st baby: If the pacifier falls on the floor, you put it away until you can go home and wash and boil it.
2nd baby: When the pacifier falls on the floor, you squirt it off with some juice from the baby’s bottle.
3rd baby: You wipe it off on your shirt and pop it back in.
1st baby: You change your baby’s diapers every hour, whether they need it or not.
2nd baby: You change their diaper every 2 to 3 hours, if needed.
3rd baby: You try to change their diaper before others start to complain about the smell or you see it sagging to their knees.
1st baby: You take your infant to Baby Gymnastics, Baby Swing, and Baby Story Hour.
2nd baby: You take your infant to Baby Gymnastics.
3rd baby: You take your infant to the supermarket and the dry cleaner.
8) Going Out
1st baby: The first time you leave your baby with a sitter, you call home 5 times.
2nd baby: Just before you walk out the door, you remember to leave a number where you can be reached.
3rd baby: You leave instructions for the sitter to call only if she sees blood.
9) At Home
1st baby: You spend a good bit of every day just gazing at the baby.
2nd baby: You spend a bit of everyday watching to be sure your older child isn’t squeezing, poking, or hitting the baby.
3rd baby: You spend a little bit of every day hiding from the children.
10) Swallowing Coins
1st child: when first child swallows a coin, you rush the child to the hospital and demand x-rays.
2nd child: when 2nd child swallows a coin, you carefully watch for coin to pass.
3rd child: when 3rd child swallows a coin you deduct it from his allowance!!
None of these thoughts are original to me...
In Hebrews 12:5-11 (see below) we find that God disciplines his children. It is not child abuse to lovingly correct a child¡¦s foolish ways. Therefore, we must not be fearful to discipline. Where there is no discipline, according to Scripture, the child is abused.
5 And have you entirely forgotten the encouraging words God spoke to you, his children? He said,
¡§My child, don¡¦t ignore it when the Lord disciplines you,
and don¡¦t be discouraged when he corrects you.
6 For the Lord disciplines those he loves,
and he punishes those he accepts as his children.¡¨
7 As you endure this divine discipline, remember that God is treating you as his own children. Whoever heard of a child who was never disciplined? 8 If God doesn¡¦t discipline you as he does all of his children, it means that you are illegitimate and are not really his children after all. 9 Since we respect our earthly fathers who disciplined us, should we not all the more cheerfully submit to the discipline of our heavenly Father and live forever?
10 For our earthly fathers disciplined us for a few years, doing the best they knew how. But God¡¦s discipline is always right and good for us because it means we will share in his holiness. 11 No discipline is enjoyable while it is happening¡Xit is painful! But afterward there will be a quiet harvest of right living for those who are trained in this way.
Don¡¦t fail to correct your children. They won¡¦t die if you spank them. Physical discipline may well save them from death.