Bring Them up in Love
And you, fathers, do not provoke your children to wrath, but bring them up in the training and admonition of the Lord. Ephesians 6:4
Sometimes when parents discipline their child lovingly, the child still becomes angry—and it’s not the parents’ fault. So, what does Paul mean when he exhorts fathers not to “provoke [their] children to wrath [or anger]”? Think of Galatians 6:7: We reap what we sow. When parents sow love and peace into a child’s life, the chances are good they will not provoke that child to anger. But the opposite is true: Disciplining a child in anger provokes that child to respond in anger over time.
Thankfully, Scripture gives parents a model to use in raising children: “the training and admonition of the Lord.” God doesn’t discipline us, His children, in anger; He disciplines us in love (Hebrews 12:5-6). No one has ever had just cause to be angry with God. And no child disciplined with the love of God will have just cause to be angry with a parent.
As with all things in life, God is the best model we have for raising children. Whether you are a parent, parent-to-be, or grandparent, let God’s love be your guide.
In the Christian way, the one vital thing is not speed or distance attained, but direction. A. W. Tozer
Parents, Do Not Provoke Your Children (Ephesians 6:4)