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Spare the Rod Spoil the Child

A hospital waiting room is sure to conjure up the most interesting of conversations. The other day as I waited for Kyle to have his throat dilated, (did you know that was even a thing?), I listened as an old man began talking loudly about why our kids are the way they are today. Why kids are violent, disrespectful and vulgar. He was sitting next to a middle-aged couple who politely nodded while he went off about lack of responsibility and parents being too easy on their kids.

The woman listening was a teacher and had adolescent children and began to chime in agreeing with the man and his rant. He went on with a story about, “back in my day, if a child disrespected an adult their parents didn’t let it stand. It only took one or two times of misbehaving and my daddy put me straight. He sure did. Use a belt or a hand whatever it may be but I was put straight. And I did the same for my children. You know what the bible says “Spare the rod, spoil the child?” And I believe in God and what the good book says.”

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Setting down my magazine, clearing my throat and leaning in I said, “Excuse me Sir? I am Christian too, and I feel that if we are trying to be Christ-like, we must be like Christ, and I can never imagine Christ striking a child because they have misbehaved. And I can tell you the couple of times I have hit my children I felt far from Christ.” I think I sort of rudely ended their conversation.

Now let me be clear, spank your kids or don’t, I don’t really care. I hope we are all trying to do the best we can.  But please do not use the words of Solomon, a self-proclaimed  lyricists (Proverbs 13:24, 29:15), to claim religious justification for hitting a child. If you want to use the words of the “good book” in parenting then let’s look at the words of Christ himself as quoted by Mark in chapter 9 vs 42, “And whosoever shall offend one of these little ones that believes in me, it is better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and he were cast into the sea.”  

And folks, let’s be real, I do not in any way claim to be the authority or supremely good at either child rearing or religion.

*Also don’t forget to enter my giveaway, entry ends Saturday! Click here to enter. And I get it, no one really wants my book haha, but enter anyway, because…. Saturday I am sweetening the pot :)

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