I’ve found that some kids just really struggle to obey. Have you?
I saw this a lot as a classroom teacher. Some kids were just natural rule followers who couldn’t get in trouble if they tried. Others couldn’t stay OUT of trouble if they tried. Even their best efforts fell short. Every. Single. Day. As a parent, I wasn’t surprised to have kids all over the spectrum. I have two kids that I’d say are average trouble-makers (ha). One child who can’t get into trouble even if she tries and one who can’t stay out of trouble no matter what she does. (Good thing God gave us a sense of humor, right?)
Of course, I don’t have to tell you that my trouble-finding child (often labeled as strong-willed) requires a lot of attention. We talk often about choices and decisions she makes (like, say, hitting her brother because he looked in her direction). And we have a LOT of teachable moment “talks” and a lot of tears in the process.
Last year she asked me a question that stopped me dead in my tracks. “Mom, why is it so hard to do the right thing?”
Since I’m the rule-following-never-gets-in-trouble type, I had to think a lot about the answer. Was it hard for me to do the right thing? Mostly no. But if no one was looking, I have to admit that I also struggled to do the right thing. She was right and the question was valid. Why is it so hard to do the right thing and how can we ALL make wise choices instead of getting ourselves into trouble?
Over the next year I started studying this topic and asking God for wisdom to help my kids (ahem, and myself) as we navigate this world full of sinful, alluring, and life-threatening choices. I began feeding this information to my kids and was pleased at the transformation I saw in my strong-willed child. BUT- I was SHOCKED at the transformation I saw in my compliant child. Helping both of them see that even choices made in the dark were impacting their lives was a huge blessing to us all.
I’m super excited to announce that I finally put all of this into a brand new study called Do Right. It’s a 4-week Bible study on the subject of making wise choices in the face of temptation. We will explore people in the Bible who teach us a lot through their mistakes and dig deep into those who are excellent examples. We will put on the whole Armor of God, learn who the real enemies are, and equip ourselves to make right choices no matter what! I’m even more excited to announce that this study is available in junior, youth, AND TEEN versions, making it a great fit for family devotions and/or discussions.
How to help your child obey when it’s hard
In support of the Bible study, I’ve created several valuable resources for parents. First is a mini-course (video series) helping you equip your kids for making wise choices.
In addition to the mini-course, I’ve recorded several Facebook live videos with extra help and information. The first one talks about why I wrote the study as well as what the different versions entail. The second is for working with compliant kids and the third for working with strong-willed children. Click below to watch those videos. (A Facebook account is NOT required.)