Training Children

“Our home is a hot-house, where God-given seedlings are raised in love and discipline, until they can be transplanted outside the home, to live victoriously in a hostile world.” – Clemmie E. Moore, MDA KEY VERSE FOR TRAINING CHILDRENProverbs 22:6 “Train up a child in the way that he shall go. And when he is old, he will not depart from it.”

“TRAIN UP . . .” these words refer basically to the mouth (gums, palate, roof of mouth). These are used for: 
1. The breaking of a horse, 
2. The rubbing of the finger on the palate with date juice, to stimulate sucking, or just to cleanse the mouth. 

“IN THE WAY THAT HE SHALL GO” is used in the Old Testament to describe the basic characteristics or manner of life of insects, animals, and the behavior of people. God has given us a word-picture. We recognize the nature and specialness of each child. Then we design what we do and say to meet the BENT of that child; it is customizing, rather than running each child through the same sausage-grinder. Each child is born different. We train to that difference. As parents we have observed the amazing built-in parental characteristics of our children from their earliest childhood. “He reacts just like grandmother, did you see?” Or, “She has her daddy's emotions.” 

“WHEN HE IS OLD . . .” The word “old” in Hebrew came to mean, “Hair on the chin.”

We are to spend such time with the child, that we discover their BENT, their unique character and personality. Then we are to prayerfully, carefully, customize training and discipline to meet the special needs (the bent) of their life. In all that we do, we are seeking to link them to the Lord of Life. Two major destroyers of children seem to be the passive father and mother, and the absent mother. “Undisciplined sin goes on to succeeding generations. For example, Abraham had a weakness to lie under stress (Genesis 20 Read the full chapter). His sinful pattern was never faced and fought to victory. Looking further in Genesis, we find Abraham's son, Isaac, infected with the same lying spirit. In fact, he duplicated his father's tragic falsehoods (Genesis 26:6-7). The lying continued in its infection. Jacob's name became identified with the false and untrue (Genesis 27:1-45) until that face to face confrontation with God by the brook that changed Jacob's heart and name. A sensitive-bent child can be cautioned, or spanked; a little goes a long way. They are little tape recordings, remembering. The stubborn child, however, must be treated with stronger and repeated exhortations and discipline. They forget well.


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* By self-image I mean, teaching the child God's view of them and their unlimited potential as they follow Christ daily.

God the Father meets our deep need to BELONG. He becomes “our Father” through our surrender to Jesus Christ. Through celebrating each person's accomplishments, stressing loving and accepting each other, we build a “team” of the family.

God the Son meets our abiding need for WORTH. Jesus died for us; we have supreme value! He knows us by name (Isaiah 49:16). Giving each child individual attention time, listening and encouraging them, deepens their sense of value.

God the Holy Spirit gives us the ability to do and be anything in the will of God! We become “more than conquerors through Him that loved us.” As each member of the family is encouraged, given responsibilities and complimented, their sense of COMPETENCE grows.

The self-image is developed by thousands of your responses to a child, both negative and positive. Discipline and positive compliments are both essential. Research conducted on 1700 children by the University of Southern California indicated three central themes running through the relationships of parents with children who had a good self-image: 

1. There was strong love and affection shown. 
2. Discipline was consistent and firm. 
3. Open-ended talking and discussion was practiced regularly.