The Pendulum’s Tether

This is not a pendulum swing back to child-centered parenting. Rather, it is a reorientation of the very tether of the pendulum.

I am untying it from man and moving the center to God. We need to do our parenting with reference to God. Remember, Mom and Dad, you lead as one under authority. You tell this child come and he comes. You tell that one goes and he goes. And yet, you are not worthy to have the Lord come under your roof. These children are gifts to you. Take your eyes off the temporal problem found in the horizontal and lift your eyes up to be reminded of your leadership and authority under the gaze of God.

There will be times that our commands need to be obeyed merely because we are telling our child to do them. I got caught up in the need to explain “why” every time I asked my daughter to do something. When your child asks “Why?” you are not obligated to give a detailed answer. Sometimes the answer “Mommy said so” is sufficient. This response, however, must always be set in the context of your love and care for your child. In other words, the child needs to hear you say: “God is good and in control of everything. He has given you Mommy and Daddy in order to protect you and provide for you. We want you to obey us because it is good for you. You may not understand now, but please know that we love you and everything will not always make sense right now–and maybe not even later.” You don’t have to say the extended version every time, but your children need to know that the shorthand form–”Mommy said so”–summarizes the longer form.

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Filed under Family | Parenting

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