19 – Question 2

You did not mention if you and your husband are both saved, so I am going to assume that you are.  It is so important that parents agree on the discipline of their children.  To act differently only confuses the children.  The words of the Apostle Paul to those at Philippi may be particularly true for parents.  He said in Philippians 2:2, “Fulfil ye my joy, that ye be likeminded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind.”  Another verse, this one written to the church at Corinth, has great application to parents.  1 Corinthians 1:10 says, “Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment.”  It’s easy to see that if being of the same mind, same judgment, and saying the same thing is critical to the church, it is also critical to the family.

Parents with different ideas of how to raise their children not only confuse their children, but it can also strain the relationship between the husband and wife.  It is so important that you and your husband come to terms with how you intend to raise your children.

A wonderful exhortation the Lord makes to the children of Israel is found in Deuteronomy 4:9, which says, “Only take heed to thyself, and keep thy soul diligently, lest thou forget the things which thine eyes have seen, and lest they depart from thy heart all the days of thy life: but teach them thy sons, and thy sons’ sons.”  In reality, to discipline means to teach.  That’s how we get the word ‘disciples’.  Those are the ones that are following and being taught by the Lord.  The Lord wants us to teach our children from our own experiences and those things we have learned from the Word of God.  It’s an awesome responsibility we assume when we become parent.  When a man becomes a father, he doesn’t just assume the title, he takes on the role of a father.  The same is true of a mother.

Psalms 127:3 tell us, “Lo, children are an heritage of the LORD: and the fruit of the womb is his reward.”  This means that our children are gifts to us from God and, as such, we should value them and work hard to protect them, provide for them, prepare them for adulthood, and most importantly to “…bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord” according to Ephesians 6:4.”

I suggest that you and your husband sit down together to pray and talk about this scriptural goal for your children.  I’m sure you both want the best for your children, so, hopefully, your goal is already the same.  Now, together decide on the proper path to reach this goal.  It’s so much better to decide on certain discipline measures before you need them.  Without emotions, like anger or bitterness, determine how to discipline your children in the way that will actually teach them good lessons.  Every bit of discipline will teach our children something…either good or bad.  When you have together decided what measures to take with your children, tell them about it.  It’s important that children have a proper understanding of consequences.  Children thrive under proper limitations, and knowing the consequences to their actions helps establish these limits.  Finally, stick to your decisions.  Don’t change your decisions when discipline is necessary.  Don’t become too harsh, and don’t become too soft.  Doing so will thoroughly confuse the children, and you will lose all credibility with them.

The Lord said of Abraham in Genesis 18:19, “For I know him, that he will command his children and his household after him, and they shall keep the way of the LORD, to do justice and judgment; that the LORD may bring upon Abraham that which he hath spoken of him.”  The blessings of the Lord will continue from generation to generation when we properly raise our children under the direction of the Lord.  It takes both the husband and wife, with one mind working together, to accomplish this.

Proverbs 1:8 says, “My son, hear the instruction of thy father, and forsake not the law of thy mother.”  Let’s make sure that we are the mothers and fathers that our children can look up to and walk in the council we have given them.  Both mother and father have to work together to accomplish this.