Monday, July 26, 2010

More on Discipline from Motherwise Biblestudy

I LOVED getting everyone's comments and, texts, and e-mails about discipline. I appreciate so much that others are willing to share their wisdom with me. Adam has let me have a break from the girls for a couple hours and so I decided I was going to go to Starbucks and get my old "Motherwise" biblestudies out and see what they have to say about discipline and I am going to write about it to have my thoughts gathered and written down.

Denise Glen says that before you can discipline your child; they must know that you love them unconditionally and the way to show this to them is by giving them your time, your touch, your talk. Although she and I could go into great detail about all of these things; I think it satisfies me to leave it be and keep moving on. Some obstacles Denise says we have to overcome in supplying our kids with unconditional love are lack of parental love we have received, self centeredness, and performance based acceptance. She says, " matter what obstacles we must overcome to love our child, we all have the same 'unconditional love fountain' " and He is Jesus. Amen to that!!!

On to discipline, Denise says (and this is soooo good!), " A child who learns to obey his parents can someday earn to obey God. When we teach our children to listen to our voices to obey, we are training them to listen to God's voice and obey." Wow, what a responsibility we have!

She also says, "The first phase of discipline for our children is to state the rules. This means to tell your child exactly what you expect of her." Since God is our ultimate example in disciplining and we see that He never ever makes his standards fuzzy for us. When I first typed that last sentence my mind said, "Wait, are you sure that's true?!" I started thinking about how everyone has different convictions and some lines are very fuzzy when it comes to the Word of God but I still believe the statement I just typed that God's standards aren't fuzzy. I mean think about it. There are the 10 commandments which are blanket rules and then when we have the Holy Spirit in our hearts He truly does set convictions for us that might be all different but you know as well as I do that you know what your convictions are and they are not fuzzy at all to you, even if you run from your convictions sometimes, they are not fuzzy, in your heart you know what God expects of you.

Ok so back to stating the rules, she says, "you must know 1) that the child can comprehend the instructions and 2) that he has the ability to carry them out." She says practicing with them is good. I need to try this practicing thing for sure with Annabelle.

So, the first phase in discipline Denise says is stating the rules and the second phase is verbally correcting the child. So, you would say, "Stop," "No," or "Don't." She says, "If your child intentionally does something wrong, verbal correction should be all that is necessary. Sometimes you can expect to remind a child of something over and over again. He is a child and not an adult, and learning is a new skill. But if you ask her to do something and she deliberately disobeys, that is rebellion and chastisement should follow." God verbally corrects us through His word and expects us to obey or chastisement will follow.

The Mothering Tip from that day was this:
"Your children will push you and test your rules for two reasons:
1) They want to know that the rule still stands and that you will stand behind it. It makes them feel secure.
2) Second, they need to test your rules to grow and mature. Eventually, they will outgrow each boundary rule, and you both need to constantly evaluate when they have outgrown it. So expect conflict as your child tests the limits. It is part of growing and developing. Remain firm on rules that need to stay in place and be flexible on ones that need to readjusted to the maturity of your child. This among other things is what makes parenting a challenge."

These statements are so reassuring to me. They make me feel as if I am not alone on this hard discipline road.

Denise says the next phase in discipline is chastisement. The scriptures she presents are

Proverbs 19:18 "Discipline your son while there is hope, and do not desire his death."
Proverbs 13:24 "He who spares his rod hates his son, but he who loves him disciplines his diligently."
Proverbs 10:13 "On the lips of the discerning, wisdom is found, but a rod is for the back of his who lacks understanding."
Proverbs 22:15 "Foolishness is bound up in the heart of a child; the rod of discipline will remove it far from him."
Proverbs 20:30 "Stripes that wound scour away evil, and strokes reach the inmost parts."
Proverbs 26:3 "A whip is for the horse, a bridle for the donkey, and a rod for the back of fools."
Proverbs 29:15,17 "The rod and reproof give wisdom, but a child who gets his own way brings shame to his mother."
"Correct your daughter, and she will give you comfort; she will delight your soul."
Proverbs 23:13, 14 "Do not hold back discipline from the child, although you beat his with the rod, he will not die."
"You shall beat him with the rod and deliver his soul from Sheol." (or Hell)

Next, she gives suggestions for spanking. Some of her suggestions include, never spanking with your hand but getting a wooden spoon so that the child knows the hands are for love. She also says to only spank of the bottom and three good swats are appropriate and to never spank in anger. Once your child understands, she suggest sending them to their room while you get the spoon and on the way to their room with the spoon praying that the spanking will be not too little or too much.

Denise says, "The purpose of spanking is to train the child to obey and to teach the painful consequences of disobedience. Spanking is not beating a child. It is a measured, controlled administration of a small amount of pain for the greater good of the child. Just as the doctor gives your child a shot to prevent disease, so spanking done correctly and in love, can prevent a child of self-destructive behavior in the future."

She also suggests comforting the child afterward and speaking from the heart about why you disciplined them but never apologize for disciplining.

So the first phase of discipline Denise says is stating the rules, the second is verbally correcting, the third is to chastise, the forth is confession and forgiveness. God expects us to confess when we have wronged Him. Denise strongly urges not to let this part of the discipline slide. She says it is important for the child to learn to apologize when they have done wrong. I think this is such a good recommendation; she suggests you practice this for your kids, when you wrong them, you say you are sorry to them and this teaches them how to confess to you and others when they have done wrong.

The last phase Denise says is righting the wrong. "Parents should set a fair penalty for any wrong done." God does this all throughout the old testament. Numbers 5:6-7 says, " 'Say to the Israelites; "When a man or woman wrongs another in any way and so is unfaithful to the Lord, that person is guilty and must confess the sin he has committed. He must make full restitution for his wrong, and add one fifth to it and give it all to the person he has wronged. " " So I know that this is the Old Testament but I feel like the principle of it still stands. (What applies form the Old Testament is another topic for sure and I'm not going there!) So, if your child wrongs you or someone else Denise suggests you have them "right the wrong." I love that she included examples from Dr. Richard Fugate. He gives a list of appropriate ways to right wrongs. One of the examples is if your child displays lack of self control, right the wrong would include denial of something desired. She suggests you post a list of disobediences and their concequences or "righting the wrongs" in clear view like on the refrigerator so you don't make an emotional decision at the time of disobedience.

Denise says, "Penalties teach a child that justice exists. Penalties need to be set for children to teach them respect for property, manners, behavior toward others, not to physically harm others, and self control. Mom one of your roles is "judge." You will have to "sit on the bench" and make rulings concerning whose fault and what are the penalties for wrongs committed. You will need a large dose of wisdom from God." AMEN to that!!

WOW! Just reviewing what I had studied in Motherwise (when for the most part I was not to the discipline phase in life yet) helped me so much. If you hung through reading this whole post, please do not think that this is the only way to discipline. This is one person's opinion (minus the Word of God, it stands alone as absolute truth.) Like I have said, a million times, one of the worst things a mom can do is judge another mother; I would never judge someone for how they discipline, that is between you, your family and God. I just wanted to study over this lesson again for myself and I'm so glad I did!!

James 1:5
If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God who gives generously to all without finding fault and it will be given him."


Terri said...

Ashely - I loved this post!!! So encouraging! I just started NO a few weeks ago :). What is this motherwise bible study? It sounds great!

Ashley Fisher :) said...

Hey Terri! It's a biblestudy for a small group but I'm sure you could do it by yourself too; it is just like one of the Beth Moore ones that has the DVDs that go with it but they aren't absolutely necessary. I think you can just google Denise Glen or Glenn and Motherwise. Let me know if you can't find it. It is such a good study!