The Wanderer

As I walked through the wilderness of this world …

The invasion of parenting

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Paul Tripp reminds us that parenting is an opportunity to employ prepared spontaneity, not an interruption to our selfish plans and purposes:

But my problem is that there are moments when I tend to love my little kingdom of one more than I love his. So I’m impatient, discouraged, or irritated not because my children have broken the laws of God’s kingdom, but the laws of mine. In my kingdom there shall be no parenting on family vacation days, or when I am reading the paper on my iPad, or after ten o’clock at night, or during a good meal, or . . . I could go on. And when I’m angry about interruptions to my kingdom plan, there are four things I tend to do.

1. I tend to turn a God-given moment of ministry into a moment of anger.

2. I do this because I have personalized what is not personal. (Before we left for the amusement park that day, my children didn’t plot to drive me crazy in the parking lot.)

3. Because I have personalized what is not personal, I am adversarial in my response. (It’s not me acting for my children, but acting against them because they are in the way of what I want.)

4. So I end up settling for situational solutions that don’t really get to the heart of the matter. (I bark and order, I instill guilt, I threaten a punishment and walk away, and my children are utterly unchanged by the encounter.)

Read it all. More helpful insights are also provided on the joyful impossibility of parenting.

Paul’s highly-spoken-of DVDs, Getting to the Heart of Parenting, are available for a week at WTS Bookstore at a 75% discount.

Written by Jeremy Walker

Thursday 13 January 2011 at 13:12

Posted in family

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