Prayer: We pray today for Your grace, oh Lord, for a family that is struggling with disciplining their children. Amen
Scripture: The rod of correction imparts wisdom, but a child left to itself disgraces his mother. Prov. 29:15 HCSB
She was crying. She and her kindergarten son were walking past my classroom from the principal’s office toward the front door. He was skipping at her side. I heard her say to him through her tears in her broken accent, “Freddy, what am I going to do with you?” This was not the first time he had been suspended for fighting on the school bus, nor the first time I had seen her come out of the office in that condition. What’s wrong with this picture? He should have been the one crying! I felt sorry for her, but also realized that unless she teaches her son how to take responsibility for his own behavior, she will cry a lot harder in the years to come.
Parents, in their love for their children, often take on the responsibility that is their children’s instead of determining ways to make them answerable for their actions. And parents aren’t the only ones. I remember times when I felt guilty and responsible for things that my students did, for which they should have felt the consequences. Was God responsible for Adam’s sin? No, indeed. He told Adam “Because you did this, this will be the result.” And only when sinful sons of Adam repent of their sins, own up to them, and feel the pain of their behavior, does God get them out of their jam by applying Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross.
Copyright Shirley Wilson. To connect with the author, email firstname.lastname@example.org
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