Little children don’t understand everything that’s going on, but they trust you that you understand, that what you say goes, and what you say is true; they believe in you. That’s why it’s so important to handle their hearts prayerfully and with utmost care.
When little children are in a contrary mood is no time to ask them anything. They’ll say no to everything!
Rules are needed, but don’t make more than you have to. The fewer hard-and-fast rules that merit punishment, the better.
Each child has a unique personality, and each one has to be dealt with on his or her maturity level and according to his or her individual characteristics and personality.
Put yourself in your children’s placeand you’ll have a better understanding of their problems.
You have to decide what rules must be obeyedwithout fail, without exception, and what rules can sometimes be relaxed. It takes the wisdom of God to know the difference, so as much as possible such decisions should be made prayerfully in consultation with Him and His Word, and not on the spur of the moment.
It takes wisdom to know when to try to persuade teenagers to do what you know from experience will turn out best, and when to agree to do things their way. Sometimes the encouragement they receive from being trusted with the decision or seeing that you’re willing to take their desires and opinions into consideration will more than make up for what they might gain by doing it your way—and of course experience is sometimes the best teacher.
God’s given us an example, and we should do with our children as He does with us. He tries to persuade us to do the right thing, the best thing, but He’s given us free will and lets us make our own decisions. Do that, when appropriate, with your children when they are small, and they will be in a better position to know how to make good choices when they get older and the stakes are higher.