|“Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.|
|As parents, we can rarely foresee when the tougher seasons of parenting are going to come. Sometimes what we anticipate doesn’t even match what actually happens. However, Christian parents must be diligent in remembering that remaining faithful to God in our parenting is extremely important during the difficult seasons.|
The difficult seasons are often opportunities for parents to choose convenience over discipline. We have all had those nights where we sit our kids in front of the TV for dinner simply because it seems to be the more convenient option at the time.
I’m not opposed to occasionally watching a show/movie together as a family while eating dinner on the couch together. However, I know I must be careful not to allow a convenient option to become the precedent and normative practice for our family. The discipline of sitting around the table facing one another during a meal is filled with priceless opportunities to have family devotions, key family discussions, or intentionally slow down the pace of the day/week and commit to sitting down without being in a rush to proceed to the next task.
The principle of choosing discipline over convenience has endless applications in the life of parenting. My encouragement to all of you parents out there is to pray to God to reveal where your opportunities to prioritize discipline over convenience may be during this season of your parenting.
Maybe it’s the use of smart devices, tv, computers in the home. Or how you use your personal hobbies/interests as a way of avoiding your children. Whatever it may be, when you are faithful in prioritizing spiritual discipline over convenience, those roots that are laid down during that tough season of parenting will no doubt pay off dividends in the future seasons.
Do not allow your current tough season of parenting to plant unhealthy roots that will make future seasons even more difficult.
For parents who have young children, toddlers, and babies with them in church; be confident in your commitment to set the precedent of your children sitting in church with you. If your church has a family room or “cry room”, remember that is for just a short season that you have to choose discipline over convenience during that time.
For parents of teenagers and young adults, don’t underestimate the influence that you still have over the children that are under your roof. Your love for Jesus Christ and what He has done with your life will be evident by how you choose discipline over convenience in how your run your home life.
Parents, go and show your love for Christ and your love for your family by making it a normative practice to choose discipline over convenience.
Sincerely, as a father & husband who struggles daily to be disciplined,