Saturday, November 23, 2013
DO YOUR KIDS A FAVOR - IN YOUR ANGER REMEMBER MERCY.
Her ten year old brother, who also knew his sister's bike was supposed to be inside, decided to ride it anyway. He was careless and dropped the bike in the next door neighbor's driveway. The neighbor did not see the bike, and drove over it - destroying it. The older sister ran outside and was heartbroken that her bike was ruined. It was her main source of entertainment. Her parents had rules. Good rules. They were not allowed to watch movies, play video games. They had to go outside and get exercise. The bike was very important to this little girl. Her mother came outside, and seeing it ruined, did not even think to scold the brother, but instantly jumped all over the little girl. "Well, if you had taken it inside when you were supposed to, your brother would not have been riding it." But didn't the brother know HE was ALSO breaking the rules? Was it also true that if HE had obeyed, his sister's bike would not be destroyed? There was no comfort to the little girl. No correction to the little boy.
So here is a heartbroken little girl.
A disobedient little girl.
Who does not have a bicycle to ride.
An ALSO a disobedient little boy.
Who DOES have a bicycle to ride.
Do you agree with the mom?
Do you think the brother was blameless?
Who should be disciplined?
God DID NOT CALL US to be MEAN TO OUR CHILDREN and CALL IT DISCIPLINE.
PUNISHMENT is not the same thing as DISCIPLINE.
Discipline teaches something. Something good.
Godly parents are warned:
"Fathers, do not irritate and provoke your children to anger [do not exasperate them to resentment], but rear them [tenderly] in the training and discipline and the counsel and admonition of the Lord." Ephesians 6:4
These are the kind of situations that give good parent's hives.
What was the Godly thing to do in this situation?
What does YOUR HEAVENLY FATHER DO... when.. after blatantly disobeying HIS RULES... YOU destroy something in your life? Something like... your marriage or your finances or your health? Does He reply to your heartbroken cry by saying,
"WELL, IT'S YOUR OWN FAULT BECAUSE YOU DISOBEYED ME."
NO. He sees a heart that is broken. And it breaks His heart when our disobedience breaks us.
I think parents should insist on obedience.
But I think parents should know when a disobedient child needs compassion and mercy.
When a mistake is SO DEVASTATING to that LITTLE CHILDLIKE HEART.. that the only thing to do is SHOW MERCY.
The little girl's FATHER came home and found a despondent child. The little girl was heartbroken. She cried in her room all night.
Her father's heart was softened toward her. He saw and decided that she was sorry and repentant over her disobedience. He told his wife, "She's learned her lesson."
The next morning he went out and bought her a new bike. He sat her down and explained, "Honey. you don't deserve a new bike. You disobeyed your mother. You asked us to forgive you for disobeying. We do forgive you. I am going to forgive you for that... and I am hoping you will learn something about God. I bought you a new bike to have MERCY on you because I believe you have learned a lesson about obeying. I also believe you are truly sorry for your actions. And even though I forgive you - I also don't want you to have to suffer the consequences of your sin. I want to fix what your disobedience has broken. Your mom and I don't want you to have to sit inside while everyone else gets to play outside. You shouldn't be getting a new bike. But you are getting one. This is mercy. Mercy is God's idea. You are getting a new bike and I hope you understand that mercy started with God."
Wise father. What do you think?
AND BTW...Her little brother?
He was really annoyed at how UNFAIR it all turned out.
"Why does SHE get a new bike and I have to ride my old one?"
Aren't we all a little like that little boy?
We don't really grasp the depth of the MERCY of God.
We don't understand when HE showers blessings on repentant disobeyers.
Showing MERCY is God's idea.
What do you think?
When God tells us we need to have mercy on others... does that include our kids?
"O Lord, I have heard the report of You and was afraid. O Lord, revive Your work in the midst of the years, in the midst of the years make Yourself known! In wrath [earnestly] remember love, pity, and mercy." Habakkuk 3:2
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