Wednesday, October 13, 2004

Being Daddy

One of the things I've learned as a parent is that God is a wonderful Father, and that I fall way way short of His ideal. Our daughter had a field trip today and acted out, losing a whole week of recess. In our imaginations, it might've been very bad, or it might not be any bigger than that. We're doing due dilligence - Vicki's calling her teacher to see what happened - before the possibility of not letting her go to the fair with her friend (who also got in trouble) this weekend.

But those eyes, and that pout - she can break your heart, get you to give her anything she wants. She's got me wrapped more than I can let on. I brought the kids home, and she has only been told to go to her room. That's a big deal for someone used to playing and bouncing and watching PBS Kids every day. But if she'd just realize that her room is full of fun, or be able to lay still awhile and think about what she's done, or cry and cry and hug on her myriad plushies - she'd at least "enjoy" her time being stuck in her room.

She's learning that when she gets in trouble, to make it right and do whatever is asked. Don't make things worse by arguing, by getting angry, by making a scene, by running away. Those things don't work - they don't help the situation close, and they don't work to prevent it from happening again.

And that's where I often think of God the Father when I'm in Daddy-mode and having to discipline my kids. He's not only punishing, but He's also trying to open our eyes to why it was wrong, how it hurt Him and others, how we need to avoid that thing in the future, and how we need to move on from here. While there's a problem with parents who never discipline their kids, there's also a problem with harsh parents who might be giving the kids what they deserve but who don't go that extra step of preparing them to do right the next time. That's grace, at least for me right now: teaching and empowering me to not only *not* sin, but to also *do* right.

Can I grace my kids in discipline, in discipling?


Blogger jen said...

At least you discipline your kids, unlike many parents who have a laissez-faire attitude about it. I've been out in public and have seen kids acting up, only to hear their mother say "OK... Mommy is going to ignore you." That really does nothing except encourage the behavior.

13/10/04 3:50 PM  
Blogger Rick said...

or i like this one (guilty!): "i'm going to count to three", and inadvertently teaching my kids that they can goof off thru one and two :P

13/10/04 8:26 PM  

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