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Friday, February 29, 2008

And I thought it was a myth...

We are officially in the Terrible Twos. I am really getting a practical dose of humility on a day-to-day basis with Jackson. He is testing every boundary we have lovingly set for him.

Solution? The rod.

When using the rod, one must discipline in the Spirit. One cannot spank in anger or frustration. A discipline session must be structured and consistent. This is hard to do. Sometimes I need to spank Jackson because he has deliberately hurt his sister, so I have two children screaming, one because she is actually hurt, and one because he is anticipating the impending session with the rod. Two screaming children does not give me a peaceful heart. It makes me want to just grab the boy and whip whatever body part is closest! Just kidding. Really.

After doing research on discipline by reading Scripture, books by Christian authors, and by talking to wiser women than I, I realized that God does call me to lovingly discipline my children. Does He not do the same for me? And does He not love me infinitely more than my human heart can love my precious child? Beau and I set up a paradigm for our sessions with the rod.

1) Give a warning.
One warning is all the child gets or needs. If the behavior or attitude does not stop in a timely manner, the child is picked up and taken to a private room so as to not embarrass him.

2) Tell the child how many spanks he will get with the rod and why the discipline is necessary.
We decided to tell the children that they will be getting x spanks. We tell them what, specifically, this spanking is for. The boundaries are clear for parent and child. I usually quickly pray before I spank so I am not angry.

3) Restore the relationship with the child.
When the discipline is over, the child has been sufficiently chastised. Now is the time for hugs, kisses, and thankful prayer. We try to pray after every session and thank the Lord for this learning opportunity and for His grace with us. I like to explain to Jackson that I must obey the Lord just as my children need to obey me. We encourage him to apologize to us and then to seek out the wronged party and apologize to him or her.

That said, we are having to implement discipline time many more times a day. Jackson has a bigger vocabulary, his strength is increasing, and his hormones are coursing. All these things make for a more willful child. God's gift to me is allowing me to stay at home with my children, and I am called to do my very best to raise the children up for Him. Please pray for me to stay consistent with correcting him!

Heb. 12:5-6. And you have forgotten that word of encouragement that addresses you as sons: "My son, do not make light of the Lord's discipline, and do not lose heart when he rebukes you, because the Lord disciplines those he loves, and he punishes everyone he accepts as a son".

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