Thursday, September 25, 2008

Shaping Their Hearts to Love Goodness

I received this daily email from John Eldredge's Ransomed Heart readings the other day. I felt it went well with "Shepherding a Child's Heart" that we are now reading. I would be interested to hear others comments on this and how they see it relates or not.


Ransomed HeartShaping Their Hearts To Love Goodness

Children need two basic messages when they are growing up:
  1. You are loved more than you can possibly imagine, and,
  2. You are not the center of the universe.

Without the first, a child will grow up insecure, uncertain, looking for love and finding it difficult to believe that he is worthy of being loved, even by God. Without the second, he will grow up selfish and self-centered, assuming that everyone else’s agenda bows to his own. No doubt you know both sorts of men.

Discipline teaches us obedience, and immediate and unquestioned obedience is a great gift to endow a boy, a quality of character that will serve him the rest of his life. For it is an essential truth of life to know and appreciate the fact that the universe does not find you at its center. Rather, it demands things of you, requires you to live within its limits. No matter how much you wail and bellow, the rain will fall, summer will pass into winter, and a two-by-four will hurt you if you drop it on your toe. Welcome to reality. Learn to live within it. How much more true this is for a man before his God. You are loved immensely, and you must obey. That is the secret to Lesson One in the Christian book of spirituality. You are loved; you must obey.

If a child is allowed to “get his own way,” that child learns he is more powerful than his parents. And that is a frightening place to find yourself at three or four years of age—to discover that you are the strongest person in your world.

Maybe this is what the writer of Hebrews was getting at when he encouraged us to see God’s discipline as an expression of his love. He cares. (Heb. 12:5–11.)

Which brings up a very important point—are we disciplining our sons to shape their hearts to love goodness, or, are we just trying to get them to do what we want them to do so that our lives are easier?

(The Way of The Wild Heart , 71, 72)

1 comment:

Julie at Ransomed Heart said...

Hi Kevin,

Thanks for your post--we love that you are getting the Daily Readings and sharing them on your blog. Did you know that we have some other great resources at our online store, I think you would really like "Fighting for the Heart's of your Children," and "Raising Boys/Raising Girls."

Best to you,

Julie from the team at Ransomed Heart