Pr 22:6 Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.
When we are training up a child it is important to note that there is a way he should go. He should not be left to his own choices because he has not yet learned that there is a difference. Every choice has a consequence that is either a blessing or a curse. Bad choices produce bad results. Good choices produce good results. It seems so simple yet we have parents letting the kids decide the choice without preparing them for the consequences, and then letting them avoid negative consequences. Without feeling the consequence of their actions, the child is not taught how to make decisions, but is taught rather that it doesn’t matter and he does not develop a sense of which way to go. Further, he fails to develop a sense of true values which may even lead him into a destructive behavior.
When a child is not taught that there is a consequence to every action, both good and bad, then he becomes confused about life. In spite of what society may say, there is a right and a wrong. It is not determined by how I feel about it, rather, it is determined by its consequences. If you don’t like the consequence of the heat of the stove, then don’t put your hand on it. It doesn’t take long to figure out that choices have consequences. You not only hinder a child from making good choices, but you put a roadblock in front of him that hinders good choices.
This is why the Lord allows us to face so many choices in life to help us make good choices, that we will be blessed and live a fruitful life. One of the responsibilities of the parent is to enforce these lessons of life. If a child fails to obey the parent there should be consequences but the consequences should not be to punish, but to correct the process of making good choices. The child should take the responsibility of the choice and thereby the consequence. Proverbs 19:18 Chasten thy son while there is hope, and let not thy soul spare for his crying. God provided a place for spanking and it will not damage the child but it is quite sensitive, due to design. Spanking should be only to enforce this lesson of consequences and we should not swerve from it for the child’s sake It is an act of love and should be followed by other expressions of love. Whenever I found it necessary to administer a spanking, it was always followed up with hugs and consolations. The purpose is to turn the child, not to punish or administer justice and should always be accompanied by grace. Ephesians 6:4 And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.
Proverbs 29:17 Correct thy son, and he shall give thee rest; yea, he shall give delight unto thy soul. I meet so many parents and/or guardians that are totally exhausted in the battle of who is going to rule the day. If you fail to carry out your responsibility to teach this lesson, the child will become confused about life and get the idea that he calls the shots and will wear you out. Your responsibility begins at birth and is built over time but once done will bring you reward for your making the right choice. This is one of the most important lessons that a child is to learn – that there is a right way and to know what it is.