Parenting requires patience, encouragement, discipline

| May 15, 2015 | 0 Comments


Chaplain (Maj.) Daniel Kang
Family Life Chaplain
U.S. Army Garrison-Hawaii


There was a young father in a supermarket, pushing a shopping cart with his little son strapped in the front.

The little boy was fussing, irritable and crying.

The other shoppers gave the pair a wide berth, because the child would pull cans off the shelf and throw them out of the cart.

The father seemed to be very calm. As he continued down each aisle, he mumbled gently, “Easy now, George. Stay calm, George. Steady, boy. It’s all right, George.”

A mother who was passing by was greatly impressed by this young father’s solicitous attitude. She said, “You certainly know how to talk to an upset child – quietly and gently.”

And then as she was bending down to the little boy, she said, “What seems to be the trouble, George?”

“Oh no,” said the father. “He’s Tom. I’m George.”

There are many different healthy and positive ways to raise children. However, it is impossible to examine all of our parenting options in such a limited space. Let’s look at two areas of parenting for now — love and discipline.

Love and discipline are very broad terms to put into practice, and each parent will apply them differently, according to their own ways, based on their backgrounds and value. So let me break it down for you.

Love means encouraging our children.

  • Encourage them with our presence.

•Encourage them with our words.

•Encourage them with our touch.

Encouragement is a powerful tool. Parents can make an incredible impact on the lives of their children when it’s used the right way. We have no idea what it means to our kids for them to look in the stands or into the audience and see mom and dad sitting there, not texting on their phone, but watching them.

Encourage them with our words and touch. There is a power in the word.

Did you know that it takes about 15 words of encouragement to undo just one negative comment? In addition, there is something very therapeutic about the touch. A study says that when we give/receive hugs for 12 seconds, our brain registers positive feelings and energy, and then begins to release positive chemicals in our body. It is meaningful touch that encourages our children.

Discipline means urging our children.

Our culture has turned discipline into a dirty word, especially in the area of parenting. To speak of a parent disciplining a child today evokes images of unreasonable anger and brutal beatings.


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


Definitely, it takes courage and intentionality to discipline our children. Parents have to be proactive, and not reactive, when it comes to disciplining children. Discipline’s purpose is to train for correction and maturity rather than to inflict a penalty.

Discipline is for future correct acts, instead of past misdeeds. Discipline is with love and concerned attitude, instead of hostility and frustration. Discipline brings security to children, instead of fear and guilt.

Parenting is a privilege and a blessing. Enjoy your children and be a responsible parent. We only have them for a while.

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Category: Footsteps in Faith, News

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