Train Them Up

Back in the year 2000, I read a book that was circulating among the families in the homeschool academy which we are members of. At the time, my son was nearing his fifth birthday. This boy was becoming increasingly difficult to control and frustration was taking hold of both my wife and I. The book makes the very profound point that it is a huge mistake and one made by the vast majority of parents to wait for misbehavior in a child and then take appropriate disciplinary action. The proven method is stated in the Book of Proverbs: “TRAIN up a child in the way he should go and he will not depart from it” Training children is not a reactionary activity but an anticipatory one – we take certain steps and create certain situations and use those instances to bring about a desired, habitual response in the child.
This concept was an eye-opener for my wife and I. I implemented the strategies in the book and the results were very apparent and much appreciated in a matter of a few days. I could sit in a chair and call my son to me and he would literally run to me and say “yes sir” upon arriving where I was seated. A few days before, I had to physically restrain him while my wife dressed him for church. I know that many good people will read this description of an out of control child and shake their heads in agreement. I am here to tell anyone who reads this post that it does not have to be that way. In fact, the out of control child terrorizing his parents is not normal and it is a sign that something is desperately wrong. But like most of the insanity that surrounds us today, it has come to be accepted that raising children is a battle zone with stress and fighting and nerve medicine for everyone involved. A fascinating, undeniable fact: children who are trained and guided in correct behavior by parents whose interest in them far surpasses any of the other frivolous activities we moderns involve ourselves in instinctively know in their heart and soul that their parents love them and want them to mature into the amazing person God created them to be. The opposite is also sadly true and undeniable. Untrained children whose parents can’t be bothered to train and teach them know in their young hearts that they are not at the top of Mom and Dad’s priority list – they sense that they are drifting and alone, rudderless in a society that will do them great harm. So, we have thousands of young souls ingesting drugs prescribed by physicians and approved of by their parents – drugs to help them cope with the grinding anxiety and uneasiness they feel every day. The tension is palpable and it is unnecessary – it is not accidental or just something to be accepted in our hectic society. It is the result, the consequence of actions, or inaction, of parents who have never been exposed to biblical methods of training and raising children. This theme will be developed more in future posts, but something to think about until then:
The Amish community in the area where the author of this book lives travel exclusively by horse-drawn buggies on very narrow country highways and 2-lane roads. Also traveling on these roads are fast moving 18 wheelers and other large commercial vehicles. The horses pulling these buggies must be very strictly trained to remain rigidly in the lane of the road in which the buggie is traveling as one of these large trucks approaches – a couple inches out of line and disaster could easily result. Granted, our kids are not animals pulling buggies, but they are innocent, unknowing young people who could easily encounter disaster in our increasingly barbaric society – unless they are trained in the way they should go.
Book information: To Train Up a Child – visit Nogreaterjoy.org
God Bless.