Sermons

Summary: Parents, Please Be Parents!

One day a little girl was sitting and watching her mother do the dishes at the kitchen sink. She suddenly noticed that her mother had several strands of white hair sticking out in contrast on her brunette head. She looked at her mother and inquisitively asked, ’Why are some of your hairs white, Mom?’ Her mother replied, ’Well, every time that you do something wrong and make me cry or unhappy, one of my hairs turns white.’ The little girl thought about this revelation for a while and then said, ’Momma, how come ALL of grandma’s hairs are white?’

Discipline is hard on parents. We concluded Wednesday night that most of us have not told a child that discipline “hurts me more than it does you”. Yet discipline is difficult on the parent. Children just don’t know when to act up! If only our children would simply learn to disobey only when the child is alone with the parent instead of the middle of a church service! If only our child would wait to slug his little sibling until after we have put on the boxing gloves and protective gear on them! If only our children would wait until after the company leaves to repeat what we said about those people before they got there. Parents, isn’t it humbling when you see your own faults running around on two little legs?

An American Bible Society study conducted by Weekly Reader Research found that children actually do mirror their parents’ behavior. Parents who attend church weekly tend to have teens that worship weekly, while 78% of parents who never attend worship services have teens who never attend, according to christiannewswire.com. The survey found almost 80% of America’s 30.2 million 12-18 year olds think the Bible is important and 87% of parents agree. Yet, only 11% of teens read the Bible daily.

Being a parent is hours upon days upon weeks upon years of having little people running around doing things you don’t want done, making mistakes, spilling milk, wasting your time, misbehaving, driving you to the point of momentary insanity. Since our use of discipline normally occurs during periods of out-of-control and inappropriate behavior, it is easy to understand why anger and frustration are frequently attached to it.

Bill Cosby’s advice on discipline:

“Always end the name of your child with a vowel, so that when you yell, the name will carry.” —Bill Cosby

Proverbs 22:15

15 Folly is bound up in the heart of a child,

but the rod of discipline will drive it far from him.

(NIV)

A mother overheard her son’s little six-year-old friend ask why babies are spanked when they are born, the youngster replied, "To get them used to it." Really the Bible indicates that when parents make their children mind they are really trying to save their lives.

Proverbs 23:14

14 Punish him with the rod and save his soul from death.

(NIV)

Proverbs 13:24

24 He who spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is careful to discipline him.

(NIV)

The Pain of Discipline weighs ounces.

The Pain of Regret weighs tons.

Pediatricians and psychologists are finding today’s parents are too permissive. They are reluctant to set limits for their children. And this benign parental neglect is harming kids from the ages of nine months to adolescence.

Karen Stabiner writes in the New York Times: "It seems that the parents of today’s parents, those strict disciplinarians of the 1950s and early ’60s, may have been right all along: father and mother did know best. . . ."

Revetta Bowers heads the Centre for Early Education in Los Angeles. She says schools are replacing parents. "Schools now make rules, which in many instances are the only rules that are not open to arbitration or negotiation. What children really need is guidance and love and support. We expect them to act more and more like adults, while we act more and more like children. Then, when we’re ready to act like parents, they bristle at the retaking of authority."

In other words, you can’t leave it to Beaver.

Parents, please be parents!

Don’t waste your time trying to become your child’s friend. God, in His great wisdom, did not make you’re your child’s friend. You are the parent! And you will make your children mad every now and then! It’s in the daddy manual, right after taking out the trash, dads make everybody mad every once in awhile! It is the job of parents to discipline or train children.

Parents discipline children so they learn to discipline themselves.

A kindergarten in one town sat right on a corner by a busy highway. Although the school had a nice yard in which the children could play, at recess they would huddle right up against the building. The cars speeding by frightened them. One day, workmen erected a steel fence around the school yard. From that point on, the children used the entire playground. The fence did not limit their freedom; it actually expanded it. Children need fences, for they feel more secure having the discipline of clear boundaries (Nelson’s Complete Book of Stories, Illustrations & Quotes, pp. 592-593).

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