Discipline is a subject that is hard to talk about with parents and non-parents alike. Every child is different and everybody has an opinion on how to raise and discipline your children. As a mother, I welcome any advice and still value the opinions of my friends and family on how I can be a better mom and raise my kids to be respectful and obedient. I want to discipline them in love and help them make better choices out of their own free will and not out of force.
I will be honest though. Sometimes, somebody will show me a different way to handle discipline or offer me some advice and I start to get defensive. Thoughts will run through my head that I don't like to face. These thoughts sometimes sound like, "Who are you to tell me how to handle my kids?" and, "Are you calling me a bad mom because I don't do that?"
The truth is that most of the time, it is done out of love. They want to see me succeed and they are offering tools to help me and my children. With careful instruction here at New Beginnings, we are teaching our resident mothers how to discipline out of love and understanding the way that God instructs us to do. God is love and so everything He does is out of love. Should we not mirror His example?
The Bible tells us "He who spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is diligent to discipline him." - Proverbs 13:24 We are also told "Discipline your children, for in that there is hope; do not be a willing party to their death." - Proverbs 19:18 God disciplines us out of love. We are His children. We should raise our children out of love the way God has loved us.
As a mother of teenagers, I was looking for advice on disciplining my children out of that love that Christ has taught us. I found a website that is wonderful and has tips on how to discipline from a Christian point of view using our Lord as the center. You can see it by clicking on the button below.
May God Bless and Guide You!
Christina Pritzlaff is married with two children. She has completed Early Childhood 1 & 2 classes, Infant Toddler classes, and completed the coursework for her Associates degree in Child Development. Christina splits her time between spending time with her family and working at New
Beginnings. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her children, camping, fishing, reading, and doing counted cross-stitch.
Guilt & God's Grace
Before you become a first-time parent, you expect to feel overwhelming amounts of LOVE! JOY! HAPPINESS! EXCITEMENT! ADVENTURE! And you’re right to feel those things. However, if you are now a mom or dad to a precious little one (or several!), you know that other feelings come along with parenthood.
And those nagging voices in your head…
Do I read to them enough?
Do I play with them enough?
Do I encourage and praise them enough?
Should I be more flexible with their sleeping schedules? Or are they staying up too late the way it is?
Am I too strict with their diet? Or did I just give them WAY too much sugar?
Is it bad that I’m letting them watch (yet another) show so that I can have a little quiet time?
Was that punishment too harsh?... or too lenient?
Do I yell at my kids too much?
Do they KNOW that I love them?
We’re late to school again. How is everyone else ALWAYS on time?!
I forgot to make sure my kids did their homework.
If any of the above thoughts have run across your mind, you’re not alone! They are all genuine concerns that I have had at times, and I guarantee there are other moms out there with them as well (anyone willing to raise your hand??).
I fail every single day as a mother, but guess what? Christ’s love never fails us! He takes all of my imperfections and covers them with His cleansing blood. When the feelings of mommy-guilt consume me, there is nothing more comforting than the words Paul writes in 2 Corinthians 12:9:
But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.
Grace. Thank you, Lord, for the grace you have shown me as a mother. Thank you for the forgiveness you’ve given me when I fall short, and for helping my children forgive my daily shortcomings to them.
Grace. It’s all we need to remember when we feel like the mom next to us at the school pick-up has it all together perfectly. Her daily mess-ups with her kids are covered by God’s grace, too, and maybe that’s the reason why I don’t see them.
Grace. The more weaknesses we have, the more of God’s grace we receive.
Grace. I knew there was a reason we gave our first-born this middle name; it’s a reminder of what I need each and every day to survive this thing we call parenting. May God’s grace also cover you as you navigate this winding road, and remember that you are not alone.
Beth Shiels is married to her husband, Zach, and together they have three charismatic daughters, with a fourth baby arriving in December. Beth splits her time between staying at home with her children, working at New Beginnings, and assisting in Zach's chiropractic clinic. She loves this crazy busy life Gods has blessed her with and is thankful to have the opportunity to share His love with the moms and babies at New Beginnings.
I would like to ask you a question. What are you afraid of? Instantly a little voice inside your head might be telling you things. You could be thinking I'm not afraid of anything or I'm afraid of everything. I hear many things from many different people; some are afraid of getting laid off work, while others are afraid of an illness or death in the family.
Everything that we are afraid of has one thing in common: fear of the unknown and fear of change. If you have a fear of the dark, you fear not knowing what is there that you can't see. If you are afraid of moving, you fear not knowing what is going to happen or what it will be like when you get there. When I was hired on at New Beginnings, I was terrified. I knew I would have to change so many things, including my ride to work. What if I got lost on my way there? My coworkers would be different. What if they didn't like me. My work and purpose would be different. What if I couldn't meet those goals and I let everybody down? This was all a change for me and I was afraid.
We need to look at why we are afraid of change and what God says about it. Did you notice that every single fear that I had about starting a new job involved something bad happening? Getting lost and letting people down were preparing me for the worst. I knew all these bad things could happen but I still went for the job anyway. Why? I wanted to give myself and everybody involved the chance for something better. I wanted to make a difference. I didn't want to do this just for me or just for my family but the bigger picture and for God's Glory. I knew that I couldn't make things better by staying where I was. It was time for me to start a new chapter in my life. The same is true with the mothers and babies at New Beginnings; in essence, the mothers are starting an entirely new life full of what ifs. Change is tough, but the mothers at New Beginnings can rest assured that they have the full support of staff and the other moms residing in the program. Not only do the mothers have our support, but they have the love of their Lord!
So what does God say about my fear of change and the unknown? Psalms 115:11 says "You who fear him, trust in the Lord-he is their help and shield." Isaiah 41:10 says "So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand."
I know that my fear was sinful. I did not trust the Lord like I should. I also knew that the Lord has promised to be there for me. He will be there for me and protect me and provide for me. Ultimately, I had faith. I trusted God in the end that things would work for His glory.
Change was hard and always is difficult for me and many others. We need to make those changes anyway. This is how we grow and make things better. We need to trust God that he will guide us and protect us in everything that we do.
"in God I trust and am not afraid. What can man do to me?" - Psalms 56:11
Christina Pritzlaff is married with two children. She has completed Early Childhood 1 & 2 classes, Infant Toddler classes, and completed the coursework for her Associates degree in Child Development. Christina splits her time between spending time with her family and working at NewBeginnings. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her children, camping, fishing, reading, and doing counted cross-stitch.
As a new year opens for us, let’s remember that God works every detail in our lives into something good.
A new mother was sharing with me how God had so magnificently brought together so many details in her life to bring her to New Beginnings, and how God continues to bless her and her child through the New Beginnings program.
“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” Romans 8: 28
One of the things that means so much to me is the devotional every evening at New Beginnings. It is a time for the staff and mothers to share their meal time, and be encouraged as we read and discuss Grace Moments together.
Do you think you can lose something worth keeping by God’s ordering of the affairs of the world? You can’t!
What a blessing to be able to come to New Beginnings and learn about our Savior!
He is our God, and has called us according to His own purpose. God works out everything in agreement with the purpose of His will. In him we were also chosen, having been predestined according to the plan of him who works out everything in conformity with the purpose of his will, (Ephesians 1:11).
In Him, in everything that occurs we will gain something. It might be hope, or praise, holiness, faith, patience, wisdom, or something else. However, always our best interests are made sure. Everything is working for the good of those who love Him, and even if it may seem hard, it is the right way for us, the best way for us in the end.
Karen O'Leary is an Assistant Home Manager at New Beginnings. She has her BA in Bible Theology and her Masters of Divinity. She has 8-years of experience as a Social Director at a non-profit organization helping those in crisis with financial assistance, brief supportive counseling, and being a spiritual presence in their time of need. In her free time Karen enjoys reading, cooking and traveling.