From the earliest of ages, you can begin to discipline your child. The word discipline, means to disciple, to train to act in accordance with rules. There are many forms of discipline, but the purpose of this discussion is to explore why you should begin to discipline your child from the earliest age and continue to teach, lead and guide discipline all the way to adulthood.
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We talk about the role of motherhood and understand that it’s a role that is immersed in protection. A mom cares for her child with diligence. But, that isn’t the only role that mothers are to take. A loving mother begins to nurture, protect, and guide her child from the earliest of moments.
Today, I want to discuss the role that mothers take in guiding their child through their early years. While the primary responsibility lies with the father to “train up a child” Proverbs 22:6, a mother can come alongside her husband to influence, teach and guide her children from the earliest of ages.
Being a mom is not an easy role. It may perhaps be one of the hardest roles there is. Often, for Christian mothers the relationship between mom and child begins long before the child is born, often it begins in prayer even before a baby is conceived.
She may begin by praying over them, for them, with them. She may sing to them songs of praise to the Lord, building a sense of comfort and peace when she brings to their mind the presence of God. This is one way that you can begin to discipline your child, through prayer and song.
Why You Should Discipline Your Child
A mother’s guidance continues throughout the child’s life and when a babe turns to toddlerhood, it’s the mom who is (typically) there to train in the how to’s of life. This includes training your child in discipline, by teaching them right from wrong.
We cannot neglect this portion of our role as guide to our children. Rather, we must embrace it with the understanding that we are training children for their soon to be adulthood.
Now, don’t get me wrong. I believe it’s important to let children BE CHILDREN. They should be allowed to play. You can allow them the freedom to explore their surroundings with the care of mom’s watchful eye. And they should be able to feel, touch, taste, and see their surroundings. While at the same time, they need to be gently trained in what is acceptable, and what is not acceptable.
Often, too often, moms, and perhaps dads too, consider that early childhood is not a time for discipline. Or, the opposite is true and children are not allowed to be little children, always being admonished for even the tiniest of things. It is a balancing act to be sure. But one that is quite necessary.
Do Not Neglect to Discipline Your Child
Establishing in early childhood, respect for authority goes a long way in how a child behaves through their elementary and teen years.
Children need structure, and discipline as much as they need love. They need their parents to guide them in how to live in this world. They need to be taught that the choices they make lead to consequences. And, that right choices lead to good consequences. While wrong choices lead to bad consequences.
This leading starts with you, mom. You set the tone. You take your child’s heart into your own hands and lead, gently, with love. As they get older the consequences may become more strict, but you still lead gently and with love, even through the teen years, the goal is gentle, loving guidance.
When a child is left to their own choices, with no consequences for their wrong ones, they are left never understanding that the choices they make affect other people. They never learn how to navigate this life successfully.
The Proverbs writer stated:
“The rod and rebuke give wisdom, But a child left to himself brings shame to his mother.” Proverbs 29:15
When our children are grown, do we want to see successful adults? Do we want to know that their hearts are seeking after the Lord? If so… then the choice you make, mom, while your child is young needs to be one of loving, gentle, compassionate guidance coming alongside your husband to teach, discipline and direct your child’s understanding of right and wrong.
When you discipline your child you lay a foundation for them to lead a good life, one of honesty, one of understanding of responsibility and one that is more likely to lead to peace.
Blessings of Peace,
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