Jenna and I talked about making cookies. We discussed how exciting it is when mom pulls the batch out of the oven and we want to take a bite, but, mom says we have to wait. We don't necessarily want to wait but mom did say wait. Why? Why would mom want to stop me from enjoying the cookies. Is she selfish? Does she want to withhold the cookies from me? Does she want to keep them all to herself? No, the reason I have to wait is because mom knows what is best for me. She knows the cookies are hot and they would burn me. Mom withholds the cookies because she loves me.
In our lesson later that night the kids and I touched upon the reason why we disobey. We disobey because the first man and woman disobeyed God. God told Adam and Eve to leave the tree of the knowledge of good and evil alone. They were not even to touch the tree. But they said in their hearts, "I will decide what is true and right," rather than trusting God to decide what is true and right. After Adam and Eve sinned a terrible thing happened between God and mankind. The perfect relationship was torn in two. Man and woman no longer had a perfect relationship with God, they were separated. The separation was caused by disobedience and we call that disobedience, sin.
The same thing happens when we disobey our parents. The relationship is damaged and things must be made right. Usually there is pain. It may be pain that is caused by our disobedience, such as getting burned by the cookies, or it could be pain that is caused by discipline from mom or dad. Please understand Mom and Dad, there must be discipline. It could be as simple as a firm talking to or it could involve more severe punishment depending on the situation, but there must be discipline. To withhold discipline is to affirm in your child that disobedience is ok - that to disobey is a little thing.
The reality is that disobedience is a BIG thing. When our children disobey us they disobey God as well. If we treat our children's disobedience to us a as a little thing it teaches them that their disobedience to God is a little thing as well. Their disobedience to us provides us with an incredible opportunity to demonstrate the relationship between mankind and God. Use your child's time of disobedience to display what takes place between us and God when we disobey. The relationship is broken, punishment must be made. In His grace God has provided Jesus to take the ultimate punishment upon Himself - death. In the death of Jesus the penalty for our disobedience is met and we can be reunited with God. When you discipline your child take time to share the good news that Jesus provides a way for us to be reunited with God. Encourage them to ask the Father for forgiveness. The real issue when our children disobey us is not that they are sinning against us but that they are sinning ultimately against God.