Monday, August 4, 2008

Children's Dignity

Last week the woman cutting my hair was relating to me her woes of having to deal all summer long with her 8 year old twins. Over 18 summers now I have heard from some mother of publically educated children how they cannot wait for school to start up again. Their children drive them nuts and they do not enjoy being around them. Each time I silently listen to the complaining. Early on, I would voice how I love having my children around and that we enjoy each other's company. But I quickly learned that these tormented mothers could not relate and that what I was saying never penetrated the cranium, much less their hearts. So I let them vent and wait for opportunity that might arise to introduce alternative thinking.

This time, the opportunity came when she said that she did not think she could last through one more screaming, whining, temper tantrum, throwing themselves on the ground fit. Okay, I could be silent no longer. I asked her, "You LET your children do that??" She was actually listening now. "Why, what do you do?" she asked me back. My reply, "I simply do not allow them to do such things." Her response, "What do you do, spank them????" My answer, "Of course I would if they were to act like that, but mostly I just simply and matter-of-fact tell them that that type of behavior is not allowed."
Her reaction was visible and clearly one of shock. "I could never do that. It would damage my son's dignity."

What I wanted to say was, "Oh, you're right(with sarcasm) letting your son throw himself around on the floor preserves his dignity much more than spanking does." However, I just gave her an incredulous look. I suppose it is because I have experienced this scenario so many times over the years. We live in a generation that calls evil good and good evil. The minds of people are completely twisted, contorted, illogical, and perverse. In this woman's mind, spanking a child to train him to control himself and to act like a civilized creature is reducing his dignity. Letting him act like a crazed animal on the floor is preserving dignity. To me, it is pretty simple and obvious. But to her that type of twisted thinking makes sense. (Reinforcing that public education does nothing to teach the populace clear logical thinking.)

But that is not all. We have the mind of Christ. "For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind." 2Timothy 1:7 The idea of a sound mind is a healed mind, healed from the depravity of sin and from thinking that is against all that has to do with God. In Romans 8: 5-8 we are reminded, "For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit, the things of the Spirit. For to be carnally minded is death, but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. Because the carnal mind is enmity against God; for it is not subject to the law of God, nor indeed can be. So then those who are in the flesh cannot please God."

So, Christians, preserve your children's dignity and train them up according to the Word of God, not according to the traditions or thoughts of men. God's ways always seem upside down to the carnal mind. Sometimes they seem upside down to the spiritual mind. But death leads to life, sacrifice leads to great rewards, obedience brings freedom.

---posted by Queen Lucy