No, not a firing squad, but target practice. As I stand back fifty feet from a target, my first thought is, “How hard could this be?” However, I must consider wind, forearm angle, bow
tension for velocity, etc. The same attention to detail is demanded in leading our families. Everything is grappling for an influence on your family—entertainment, culture, government, friends, church. How do you work with so many influences? You’ve probably heard the statement, “The heart of the matter is the matter of the heart.” This is the key in family issues. Tedd Tripp in Shepherding a Child’s Heart said, “Parents tend to focus on the externals of behavior…We tend to worry more about the ‘what’ of behavior than the ‘why’…Most of us spend energy…controlling behavior…we miss the heart” (xi). Continue reading →
Knock the wind out of their sails. Bursting their bubble. Give the run around. Throw a monkey wrench in. All these idioms really explain well the idea found in Colossians 3:21. God’s instruction is “Fathers, provoke not your children to anger, lest they be discouraged.” That word discouraged comes from a word with a negative prefix. Thumos is the original word which has the idea of moving, spirit, and impulse. In other words an internal motivation. Discouraged in Colossians is the negative of that word. It is knocking the wind out of your children’s sails. It is bursting their bubble. It is zapping all the life and spirit and want out of your child.
Do you look at your child and wonder what happened? Don’t look to far from yourself. There is a real danger in parenting which is discouraging your children. I recently listened to a sermon by Pastor Michael Edwards about what your children need to hear. The five statements he gave are listed below. Let’s look at what our children need to hear and feel from us so they are not provoked to anger or discouraged.