We are in the middle of working through a very helpful video training training class called Say Goodbye to Whining, Complaining, and Bad Attitudes… in You and Your Kids on Wednesday nights. The course centers around the idea of what it means for us to honor one another and how we can train our children to live out Ephesians 6:1-3 “Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. ‘Honor your father and mother’ (this is the first commandment with a promise), ‘that it may go well with you and that you may live long in the land.'”
As good as the course is, I feel a little like it starts in the middle when it comes to parenting. There is a more foundational level that many Christian parents lack. At this foundational level, we must answer some basic questions about what our mandate is as parents.
There were a handful of men who helped me in the process of forming my foundational parenting philosophy. The one who had the greatest influence on me in grounding my parenting in the Scriptures was Tedd Trip, through his Shepherding a Child’s Heart. This book covers bedrock issues that so many parents miss, like the importance of parental authority, the Biblical place for corporal punishment, and dealing with the heart instead of just behavior. As a young parent, this book helped ground my parenting in the Scriptures in a way that gave me much needed confidence when the going got tough (and the going always gets tough at some point) and we were tempted to doubt our approach because some days it didn’t seem to be “working.”
I cannot recommend this book highly enough. It is not filled with clever techniques or quick fixes but I am confident it will make you a better parent for the time you invest in it.