Proverbs 1:3

“for acquiring a disciplined and prudent life, doing what is right and just and fair”

My prayer today is that my children may develop self-discipline that they may acquire a prudent life.

I recently read that self-discipline is doing something even if you hate it or don’t feel like doing it.  Doing something because you enjoy doing it is not discipline.  Acquiring discipline is a lot like acquiring a stronger muscle.  The more you exercise the muscle, the more you get used to it and the less pain you experience.

While a lot of the literature I have skimmed over has been from a secular point of view, I have seen some good points.  But I found myself screaming out (in my head of course), YOU NEED JESUS.  I can’t imagine persevering through something that is not bringing me closer to the Lord, bettering my being to become who I am called to be.  I read somewhere that the reason one desires self-discipline is to reach a higher goal. What is the “higher goal”?  True, we want to lose those 20 pounds, make a few extra bucks or exercise more regularly.  Whatever it is, discipline to reach that goal requires rejecting instant gratification.  I eat well for 4 days and don’t see a change, so I say, “It is not working.”  I wake up early one morning to have time with the Lord and the day is crummy.  What was the purpose?  Where is the reward for my “hard work?”

I see my attitude in my children.  I fear I have warped their little minds.  They hear me say I don’t want to do another load of laundry b/c I just did 10 loads!  They see me toting my teaching bag home in hopes that I will complete all that work crammed inside.  They watch as I make wise food choices consistently for 3 weeks and then decide I am done with the endeavor b/c I want yummy food.

Oh how I hate to admit the truth of the adage “Children live what they learn and learn what they live”.

anyhoo….This subject brought up in prayer today obviously struck a chord in me.

I suppose my prayer should go something like this:

“Lord, continue to develop self-discipline in my own life so I may exemplify a disciplined and prudent life, doing what is right even when I don’t want to do it.  Give my children the desire for you and a calling to do the right thing at all times so they may become all You have called them to be.  Help me teach them how to correct and govern themselves for the sake of improvement (a righteous life).”

Some areas I specifically would like to see my children show more discipline:

-All of them could use a boost in the area of being prepared for school.  They like to assume they know content for a test simply to avoid studying.

-The older two are especially ready to learn spiritual disciplines to draw them closer to the Lord.  The husband started this process with The Lad this year.

-Little Miss lacks discipline in controlling her moods.  Hmmmmmmm….where on earth did she inherit that???

-Pumpkin lacks discipline in using her time wisely.

-All three need to be disciplined in making healthy choices, mainly food right now.

Hebrews 12:11 says “No discipline seems pleasant at the time but painful.  Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it.”

Pretty simple.  Discipline is not all that fun in the moment.  But a life of discipline is a life of righteousness and peace.

Good advice – for me and my kids.


One Comment

  1. Ella Tracy
    Posted January 28, 2011 at 8:34 am | Permalink

    How wonderful to read these thoughts and contemplate them in my own life.

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