Tuesday, February 21, 2012

To Spank or Not to Spank?

Is spanking an acceptable form of discipline? Should I spank my children? Do time out's really work? What does spare the rod and spoil the child really mean?  I have wanted to address this issue for awhile, but I was never really sure how until yesterday.

If parenting wasn't already hard enough, now we have society teaching us things which are so often completely contrary to scripture.  Forgive me if I don't believe every scientific study out there when "science" get's so many things wrong. 

It was science at one point that said the world revolved around the sun and was flat.  It was also science in the 70's that said we were entering another ice age, now the earth is in danger of igniting in flame because it's so hot.  Science get's things wrong, the Word of God however never changes. But how does one apply scripture in this area?

50 years ago there was no question as to whether or not spanking was an acceptable form of punishment for children.  Now with "scientific" studies showing how truly "detrimental" spanking is parents are left in a quandary.

"Spanking worked for me as a child, why won't it work for my children?"

In my state spanking my child is technically legal, but society in general has a perceived "spanking ban."  For that reason I would say, avoid spanking your children in public at all costs.  Delaying discipline, though not as effective would be far better than ever risking your children being taken away. But should we really spank at all?

There are instances that force must be used with children.  Not brutal force by any means, but if a young child runs out into the street you simply aren't going to call their name and hope they return to you before they are hit by a car.  NO, you're going to run out after them and pick them up and remove them from danger, and then discipline.  But how to discipline effectively remains the question.

There is one camp that says, "spanking harms a child, don't spank ever!"  There is another camp that says, "the reason why kids today are so spoiled is parents don't spank."

I'm not going to give my opinion on whether or not to spank (yes I have one) because I wouldn't want my opinion to be used for justification of abuse or it to be used for justification of a non-spanking form of discipline if it's unscriptural.  My opinion is too fuzzy to share this publicly, but..........

Here are some things I am sure of when it comes to child discipline.

  • Every single child on this planet has a sin nature, they will need discipline.
  • Children will act like children, don't be surprised when they do.
  • Discipline must be done in love.
  • Discipline must be done without anger.
  • Discipline without instruction, is fruitless.
  • Discipline must be consistent.
  • Discipline must point back to God.
I'm currently reviewing the Child Training Bible, and getting ready to post a giveaway.  As I'm highlighting scriptures in my Bible, I'm getting convicted that I haven't been using scripture as part of my discipline routine much.  Above anything else we can do for diciplining our children, our kids must learn that the Bible is the ultimate authority for behavior.

Any other definite discipline rules I forgot?

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