When Your Kids Drive You Nuts

Our small group has been reading "Grace Based Parenting" together. I heard Tim Kimmel at a conference a few years ago and really love what he has to say. The study has been a good one for our group.

Last week, one of the girls in our group had some great advice for the group which was connected to Kimmel's observation that your child's greatest strengths are often the things that drive you the most nuts.

What my friend said was this (paraphrasing): "Someone told me a long time ago that we should use our frustration with our kids' tendencies to motivate our prayers. Rather than going nuts because your kid is strong-willed, spend time thanking God for the strong-willed nature in your child and asking Him to allow that strong-willed nature to shine through when your child is 13 or 14 and facing pressure to conform to any number of scary things."

That's great advice I've already put into practice this week. Our oldest has some strong-willed tendencies but is also pretty sensitive and is very cautious when it comes to trying new things. I've spent quite a bit of time praying this week that God will use his sensitive side to shape him into a fantastic friend, while using his strong-willed, cautious nature to make him a bold, wise leader.


The Kinley's said...

daily, I need to be reminding daily if not hourly that his strong-will should make me drop to my knees. I know this, but get caught up in the distraction of his disobedience. I also has seen my oldest do things that are so kind and thoughtful, without my prompting and I know that is God working, despite me and short comings of not praying first. I believe that's God's grace based parenting of parents. :-)

lisa said...

We just got done going through the first DVD group study of this book. I think there will be 2 more, and the second one is in production. Looking forward to doing that study too. Really good stuff.

I think a lot of the time, we turn obedience into the primary goal for successful parenting. And we get obedience through our disapproval and intimidation.
But the ultimate goal is not obedience. It is connection with our child's heart. Being graceful parents helps us do that. So hard not to cross the line into a fear-based parenting skill bent on getting them to obey. Sooo hard.