"No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who are trained by it." Hebrews 12:11
I am not sure if it is the new baby, the new school year, the new lifestyle (homeschooling) ..but we are in a serious rebellious mode around here. It may, also be...that I have children at all, who are almost 4 and 6 ..yeah, that may be it.
Whatever the reason, I am realizing that I am needing some direction on teaching character to these little men. I know the "rules" ..be consistent, teach them now and dont wait til they are teenagers, discipline them with love and not anger. I know that all in my head, but we are still falling short. Or, at least we are growing out of what we have been doing in the past.
It is with this mind set that I stumbled on a really great resource for teaching godly character to children, Kids of Integrity is a project of Focus on the Family. It is offered free of charge, but is worth WAY more :) This program offers prayers for parents and children, scripture references, practical ideas for teaching character, discussion questions, projects, games and much direction in teaching these vital lessons.
Of the 16 character quality lessons they offer, we chose obedience as the one that needs the most immediate attention for these Steedly Boys.
Using Kids of Integrity as a guide, we started this morning's school session with a new memory verse, a prayer, encouragement to seek the Spirit in help to learn these lessons, and a fun project to get the ball rolling.
"If you love me, you will obey my command." John 14:15
We painted our footprints to show we are following God where he tells us to go, and then placed hearts on our toes...to remind us that if we love Him, then we will obey. They get to color in the hearts when they obey cheerfully (today, cheerfully is the operative word :) ..Ty at least filled in his hearts "cheerfully" :) ..or, silly ..I will take it :)
Stealing from my mom's method of creative discipline, we made a nickle jar. There are 20 nickels per kid in the jar with the happy face (brought to you by Canon, almost 4). When they are disobedient, or are not cheerful in their obedience, the have to put a nickel in the sad jar. Whatever they have left at the end of the week, is theirs to keep. I am hoping that since all their nickels are together, they will encourage each other to obey :) ..we will see.
The Kids of Integrity stressed the importance of keeping the concept in front of them at all times. One way I decided to do that was to write the word, "OBEY" on about 10 index cards. I added a smiley face sticker to each one. I placed them all over the house, at their level.
I put them on the bathroom door, on the tv, the computer screen, their bedroom door, the backdoor and on the DVD player in the car. The smiley face is supposed to remind them that it makes God and mommy happy when they .."obey!"
I have heard Ty say "obey" when he walked out the door the backyard today...and it DID make me happy :)
Today is the first day, and I really want to stick with this. I tend to be great coming of the gate, but slack off. I want to do this right, teaching obedience AND just raising this boys.
I feel grossly inadequate most of the time, but I am trying to tap into the resources God has given me for this overwhelming purpose.
Want to do this with me? It will help me keep motivated and focused ...you can check out the Kids of Integrity website, chose a lesson and get started Monday!