This is written in the front of a book my mom handed to me Sunday night.
Boundaries with Kids, written by Dr. Henry Cloud and Dr. John Townsend caught my attention immediately because I was given another Dr. Henry Cloud book by a church leader when I was in Omaha earlier this year.
As I was reading the introduction and first Chapter, part of me feels like I'm not good enough to instill 'boundaries' in my children, because I still struggle with boundaries myself! Boundaries have been a sensitive subject for me all my life and I honestly don't know if I understand them very well!
Boundaries = Self-control
Some Boundary Problems:
-Taking responsibility for other people's lives.
-Ability to be easily manipulated or controlled.
-Struggles with intimacy and maintaining closeness with others.
-Inability to say no to their own destructive impulses, etc...*
I'm looking forward to learning more about this subject for the sake of my Little Ones!!
If a person's character makeup determines his future, then child rearing is primarily about helping children to develop character that will take them through life safely, securely, productively, and joyfully.*
I love the first Chapter so far because I can relate with being the mom that just does everything for her children. I'm the type to rather do it myself than wait or teach someone to do it for themselves. If it's not getting done, I'll just do it. Better quickly than not at all. When you are a parent, you help create a child's future.* But I am pretty much being selfish, only thinking of my instant peace if I do everything myself. In being patient and teaching and enforcing my children to work at certain projects, I am creating their future. Not only getting things done now, but developing their character.
All my life, I've listened to parents say they'd rather be their child's friend more than an authority figure. Parents say that they want their children to feel comfortable talking to them about anything and everything. Honestly, I don't know if this is correct? Where do I draw the line? When do I become their friend? And when do I discipline? The book lists three main roles of a parent. And none of them is 'friend'!
Galatians 4 starts off with two metaphors (#1 Father & Son) (#2 Master & Slave) and says that children are "under guardians and managers" until the appropriate time. I want to never forget that it is my role to guard and manage my children and prepare them now for their futures. They are only toddlers, and one is almost ready for kindergarten, but it is never to early to start practicing.
Thank you Abba for showing me this truth, that You are our ultimate Guardian, Manager and Source. I hope that my children will come to realize that they cannot lead themselves, that they will need you to manage and guard their lives, and that YOU would be their first source! A source of strength, stamina and life for them, everyday. Wherever my children go to school, whether it is public, private or wherever, I and my husband need to be in charge of maintaining these primary roles in their lives. Please help me to be able to finish studying this book, even if it's a little at a time. I love you Abba,
*Excerpts taken from Chapter 1, Boundaries with Kids, pp. 15-19; Cloud/Townsend
Now I say, as long as the heir is a child, he does not differ at all from a slave although he is owner of everything, but he is under guardians and managers until the date set by the father. So also we, while we were children, were held in bondage under the elemental things of the world.
But when the fullness of the time came, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the Law, so that He might redeem those who were under the Law, that we might receive the adoption as sons.