Has one of your children ever thrown a world-class fit in a store?
My son Trent did that once when he was little. He wanted a candy bar while he was with his mom in the checkout aisle. I was out of town, so Jean was alone with him. Trent had a meltdown because he couldn’t have the chocolate he was after.
Jean was a new mom and was embarrassed that she couldn’t get Trent under control. Fortunately, a man dressed in a military uniform intervened and told Trent, “Son, you need to listen to your mother.”
I don’t know who that man was, but I say, “Thank you.”
Situations like that happen to moms and dads, and it’s not always clear how to respond. How should parents deal with whining children, for example? How about lying? What about tattling, complaining, or interrupting?
The solution starts with the end goal in mind. Raising children isn’t only about behavior modification. It’s about connecting with their heart, because their heart is ultimately the source of their behavior.
Sin doesn’t begin with our words or our actions, it begins with our motivations. In Matthew 12:34, Jesus says, “For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.” We do and say whatever is in our hearts.
Author Ginger Hubbard says, “What’s down in the well comes up in the bucket.” She also says many parents adopt faulty child training methods that only address outward behavior and not inner motivation.
There is far more to parenting than correcting our child’s outer behavior.
On our Focus on the Family Broadcast “Taming Your Child’s Tongue” we’re talking with Ginger Hubbard about how parents can connect with the heart of a child when he or she whines or lies.
We’re discussing her book I Can’t Believe You Just Said Thatwhich will empower you to help your child at a heart level with a long list of behaviors including whining, lying, tattling, defying, manipulating, interrupting, complaining, blame shifting, teasing, aggravating, bragging, arguing, yelling, gossiping, bickering.
You’ll also learn how to ask heart-probing questions like Jesus did. We’d like to send you a copy for a gift of any amount. Give us a call at 1-800-A-FAMILY (232-6459) or visit our websitefor more information. Thank you for your support.