When my natural reaction is to ignore my kids’ bad behavior and pretend it’s not happening, these words in Proverbs make me want to step it up with the role of Mama that the Lord has given me.
When I teach in school and also parent our triplets, I am big on believing in each child, being FOR them, and wanting to see them succeed.
But, one thing I have learned is that consequences work far better than constant reminders. Children remember consequences. They empower kids to change their behavior.
I don’t think that means we should constantly be throwing out consequences. I think some reminders are great and offer grace. Lord knows I need reminders.
But, if we get to the point where we want to pull our hair out from the continuous reminders or our kids get to the point where they don’t do something unless they’re reminded, something needs to change.
Maybe we can come up with a reward system if it’s a behavior that needs to be practiced (I’m all about positive reinforcement). See my post about a reward system that worked for my kids helping with their dishes, vacuuming, and washing the table after meals without being reminded: https://linseydriskill.com/2019/10/13/idea-to-motivate-helping-out-fun-beautiful-hearted-parenting-❤%EF%B8%8F/)
If it’s a sassy or disrespectful attitude that’s happening, giving reminders of what’s acceptable and doing devotionals about the topic at a later time are great tools to use.
But if it keeps happening, consequences give children motivation to change their behavior.
The consequence will be different for each child based on age and personality. But some I think are helpful are spending some time in their room to calm down, time outs for younger children, taking away a toy or other important thing from them for a time period, or cancelling an event they were looking forward to.
My preference would be for positive reinforcement, but consequences have their place. They do take more time and energy on the on-set, but they sure pay off later.
You got this. We got this.
Lord, as we parent, give us wisdom in giving consequences, reminders, and simply in parenting. Help us not be entangled by details, but to look to you to lead us. Remind us as we raise our children that love matters most. In Jesus’ name, amen. ❤️
When my kids were little, I used to sing to each of them, “I love, (their name), yes I do. I love you because you’re you.” Now that they’re older, that song doesn’t fly too often 😂 so from time to time, I ask them, “Do you know why I love you?” And, I tell them, “I love you because you’re you.”
It reminds me of these words by Christian author and counselor, Sissy Goff: “The very best thing you can offer a child or teenager is simply to enjoy them. Kids who feel enjoyed are more prone to listen, to respond, and to begin to feel there could be something enjoyable about themselves.”
Let’s help our children feel secure in our love so they can better grow in confidence. And, so they simply know that we love them. ❤️
After our triplets were born at 29 weeks and 2.5 pounds, we went through some traumatic times with our son and one of our daughters having life-threatening infections.
They had TONS of antibiotics. We had no other choice. They later went on to have intestinal surgeries.
When they were sick in the NICU, I couldn’t do all I wanted as a mom. I couldn’t hold them when I wanted to, offer “skin-to-skin”, or do so many other things that researchers say are key to development.
Our now eight-year-olds are thriving, and I am so grateful to the Lord. But, it reminded me that I need to check myself. We need to check ourselves.
What are we consuming our minds with in parenting? What are we spending our time obsessing or worrying about?
What am I worrying about?
Some parenting decisions are ones we do need to take time to decide on. And, some of us are passionate about different strategies and opinions. All that is fine.
But, at the end of the day, are we consumed by them? Are we obsessing and worrying about them?
When I’m in that mode, my husband reminds me to relax. To not laser in on such details. In the bigger picture, they just don’t matter.
My mind can get consumed with LITTLE things in the here and now, when the Lord beckons us to the eternal. To his kingdom. To things above.
There is so much more to our time here.
There is so much more to this life than analyzing and overanalyzing.
There’s so much more than being consumed with self.
The Lord wants us to look beyond ourselves.
He wants us to remember what matters: Love. Love. Love.
Lord, may our hearts be drawn to you. May we ache for what aches your heart. May we not obsess about getting little decisions right in raising our kids, but pour ourselves into loving you with all our heart and loving those around us – caring mostly about becoming selfless, letting go, following you, and being more like you. Jesus, make us more like you. In Jesus’ name, amen.
“Set your hearts on things above.” Colossians 3:3