By Steve Arterburn*
If Matt wants to run with thugs, he can spend the night in jail,” Grant said angrily as he slapped the keys on the counter. “I’m going to bed.”
“What? You’re just going to leave him there?” Amy grabbed Grant’s arm. “You saw his terrified face. Something could happen to him in that horrible place!”
“He should have thought about that before he spray painted the school.”
“We should bail him out,” she pleaded.
“That’s the problem,” Grant said, pointing at Amy, “your need to fix everything for Matt when he does something wrong.”
Amy stiffened then shot back, “And your perfectionism drove him to rebel.”
“A little struggle will make him a man.” Grant shook his head. “I don’t understand why you can’t see that.”
“Why do you want our only son to grow up so fast?”
“My parents expected more from me when I was his age, and I don’t think it’s a crime to expect the same from Matt.”
“Not everyone has to be as uptight as you, Grant. He’s a good boy; he’ll be a good man.”
Grant glared. “Don’t come crying to me when your son is thirty and has a criminal record as long as my arm,” he said as he stomped out.
In their desire to have a united home, Grant and Amy had together worked out where to live, what to budget, and which set of parents to visit on each holiday. But when it came to disciplining the kids, they could not agree—until they got some help. Has a battle over discipline fractured your relationship? If so, consider inviting an older couple you admire—a couple who raised their children successfully—to work with you. Try to find the right balance between your discipline styles. Both you and your children will benefit from a more coordinated and loving approach.
Today’s Thought based on 1 Samuel 3:11-14
“Children need one united front coming from Mom and Dad. Work through your differences…and then stand united." —John Piper
He Reads: Psalm 103:8
She Reads: Proverbs 15:32
"Father, because you discipline us when we rebel, we know you love us. Help us unite in loving our children. Amen."
* Steve Arterburn is the founder and chairman of New Life Ministries and host of the # 1 nationally syndicated Christian counseling talk show “New Life Live” heard and watched by millions on over 180 radio stations nationwide in addition to Sirius XM Satellite radio and now seen on television on the Family Net and NRB networks. Steve is also the founder of the Women of Faith conferences attended by over 4,000,000 people. He also serves as a teaching pastor at Heartland Church in Indianapolis.