4:25 – Parenting Doesn’t (shouldn’t) Keep Score
#faithbites #faithjourning parenting
This one is for all the parents and caregivers out there. Parenting is hard!
Yesterday we said that love doesn’t keep score. What about parenting? Last night, IU was walking my dog and thought of all the things I’ve done wrong as a parent. Not having them eat healthy enough, not sticking to my guns, yelling, not playing with them because they were misbehaving, and the list goes on and on. Then I make a list of the good things I do: playing with them, challenging them, hugging and comforting them, sharing God’s love and the list goes on and on. I often wonder if the bad cancels the good or if there is enough good to cancel the bad. I hope so, but am I counting right? Should I even count or keep the score? If love doesn’t keep score, should parenting keep score?
How do we teach, love, grow, provide consequences, if we don’t keep score? Is there is another way to do it?
Do you keep score with your children?
- 1 Corinthians 13:4-5 – 4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.
- Ephesians 6:4 – Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.
- Proverbs 29:15 – The rod and reproof give wisdom, but a child left to himself brings shame to his mother.
Love keeps no record of wrongs. God is love and Jesus forgives all wrongs. We are clean and pure. In parenting, it is more difficult. We need to train our children up, give them discipline, and instruction. We shouldn’t leave them to their own design as they need structure and discipline.
Trying to unpack this is a bit hard. We can discipline and keep no record. We can discipline our kids when they do something wrong, then forgive them and move on. The hardest part is when they do the same thing over and over again. IF we truly don’t keep a record of their wrongs, should the second punishment be worse than the first?
For me, I’m trying to separate the behavior from the child. That if they do something wrong they get a consequence but it doesn’t change how I feel about them. The hardest one is when a child has been yelling, screaming, and then wants me to play. I love them and can forgive them for their actions but don’t want to play. I guess that’s a consequence but its still hard.
How do you love your children or those you care for without keeping score? When you mess you, which we all do, how do you “Justify” it or how do you let it go?
Not many suggestions today. I just remember a movie or a show that said there are millions of right things you can do for your children and only a few that will really mess them up. If you are living the way God tells us to live AND you are seeking their forgiveness, you are on the right track. No score needed.
Good luck on the balance going forward. Remember, you are not alone! We are in this with you.
Father God, your Agape love is love like we can’t understand. You forgive us, love us, and keep no record of our wrongs. Help us to love our children like you love us. Let us not keep score on when they are good or bad AND when we do good or bad. Let us love no matter what. Help us to discipline with love, understanding, and according to your way. We pray all these things in your name, Amen.