In my last post I talked about how valuable Shepherding a Child’s Heart was for me in the forming of my parenting philosophy. If you read that post and thought to yourself “That sounds great, but I’ve already got a stack of unread books next to my bed. This would just be one more book I’ll feel bad about not reading,” then I’ve got some good news for you. I’ve found a series of messages that Dr. Tripp gave at The Bible Church of Little Rock in 1997 that covers much of what is in his book.
The first message is Shepherding Your Child’s Heart: Ages 0-5.
In this message, Dr. Tripp lays the foundation you need for those important early years. I am a firm believer that these years are far more critical than many parents believe. We might think that the important stuff comes later when the child is making meaningful choices, gets to choose his own friends, and can begin to articulate a world-view. But much of the child’s world-view actually gets shaped way before he can put it into words.
In this message, Tripp lays out two fundamental concepts we must grasp as parents…
The first is that parents are set by God as authorities over their children. This is not a fashionable notion in today’s culture, but if we don’t get this this, we will rob our children of the firm boundaries they need as well as the training they need in accepting that they are not the center of the universe. In these early years, parents are like proxies for God to their children. If a child isn’t taught to respect the authority of his earthly parents who are tangibly present, he will have a hard time accepting the authority of God, an employer, or the civil authorities.
Second, Dr. Tripp lays out the why, when, and how of Biblical chastisement (aka spanking). This is another unpopular practice these days. Many parents are uncomfortable with it. To be honest, from what I’ve seen in many parents, I am too. This is because many parents have not thought through why they spank, when to spank, and how spank. This is so critical. While I believe that spanking is a Biblical mandate, I believe that doing it poorly is worse than not doing it at all. Dr. Tripp provides great advice in this teaching. I recommend listening to it a few times if this is new for you.
I’ll post the links to the other messages with brief synopses as I listen to them.