Spirit-Led Woman

Want to receive SpiritLed Woman by email? Sign up here
mom with son
(http://www.stockfreeimages.com)

The SpiritLed Woman podcast is empowering women weekly to follow their purpose in Christ and boldly walk in faith. Listen at charismapodcastnetwork.com.


Do unto your children as you would have them do unto you.

The Lord has been convicting me from this verse for a few weeks. I am long familiar with The Golden Rule, yet it’s only in the last month that I’ve thought of it particularly in terms of my children—not treating them as they ARE but as I would have them TO BE.

As often is the case, God used my son's little secular hippie preschool to bring this home for me. At a parent meeting, the speaker asked parents what were their main concerns for their children’s behavior right now.

Parents yelled out things like sibling rivalry, angry tantrums, hitting, general snotty attitudes and so forth. Then she asked what character qualities we hoped they’d have when they headed to college. The group suggested empathy, perseverance, and self-confidence, among others.

As a believer, I would add grace, service, and love. I really want my boys to have personal confidence in who they are in Christ, which equips them to extend grace to others. I want them to love as I Corinthians 13 defines it—with patience, with a long fuse, not rude, not keeping a record of wrongs, giving the benefit of the doubt, and so on. I want them to serve like Christ.

Then the speaker led us in an exercise. She said, “Put your feet squarely on the floor.” She did it, and we did too. “Sit up straight.” She modeled, and we did it too. “Touch your thumb and first finger in an OK sign.” We did it with her.

“Put the OK sign on your chin.” But she put hers on her cheek. And every last one of us in the room without thinking put ours on our cheek too. She had made her point effectively. We say we want one thing with our kids, but so often we model something else. And they will always pick up what we MODEL over what we SAY.

God got my attention. My son has an anger problem because I have an anger problem that I have well modeled for him. And when I get angry at him because he got angry and threw a toy, I’m not helping anything.

Apart from scripture, my default belief system is that when he sins, I need to get really angry in proportion to the seriousness of the offense, that the angrier I get, the more effective it will be at deterring him from doing it again. The only problem is that my anger is NOT a deterrent to him doing it again. It just models anger for him and educates him in more sophisticated ways to act on it. That’s not how God transforms me, and it’s not how He intends me to disciple my children.

Here are Jesus’ instructions from Luke 6.

"And just as you want men to do to you, you also do to them likewise" (Luke 6:31 NKJV).

 "If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners love those who love them. And if you do good to those who do good to you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners do the same. And if you lend to those from whom you hope to receive back, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners, to receive as much back. But love your enemies, do good, and lend, hoping for nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High, for he is kind to the unthankful and evil. Therefore be merciful, even as your Father also is merciful" (Luke 6:32-36).

As I wish that my boys would do to me and others, I should do to them. Not do to them in a reactionary response to what they just did. It’s my job to break the cycle of "act and react."

I should just ACT. Stay on course. Love. Grace. Compassion. Endurance. Act on my vision of what I want them to be and model consistently for them my end goal. My angry little boy sure can make me angry. But my job in Christ is to stop the cycle, correct him, and model for him with my life as well as my words a new and better way through gospel grace to deal with conflict.

Of course, the Golden Rule transcends child-rearing. I had just never thought of it in those specific terms. It applies to my children, my husband, my friends, and my enemies. Do to them not in reaction to what they just did to me, but do to them with a vision of where God is calling them. And THAT is the essence of being salt and light in the places God has called me to function.


Wendy Alsup is an author and blogger. She is also a wife, mom and college math teacher who loves ministering to women. Check out her blog at www.theologyforwomen.org.

Best Magazine Deal. Subscribe now and get 3 magazines for the price of 1. Get Charisma, SpiritLed Woman and Ministry Today, all for $24. YES - I want this deal!

3 Reasons Why you should read Life in the Spirit. 1) Get to know the Holy Spirit. 2) Learn to enter God's presence 3) Hear God's voice clearly! Click Here to draw closer to God!

Your Turn

Comment Guidelines
View/Add Comments
  • Roadblock

    6 Roadblocks That Will Stop Your Spiritual Growth

    God wants you to grow in your faith, but many of us get stuck along the way.

  • 2017 is the year that swords will clash.

    Prophetic Word: 2017 Will Bring a Clashing of Heaven and Hell

    "This is a time to cross over and not pull back."

  • Inner Healing Is the Fruit of the Spirit

    Inner Healing Is the Fruit of the Spirit

    I have been puzzled about the subject of inner healing for some time.

  • Are you willing to volunteer for God's offensive army?

    Prophetic Word: Preparing for God's World War 3

    God is searching for soldiers of the cross who are willing to volunteer for His offensive army.

  • The devil will try to silence you in any way he can. Don't give him the satisfaction.

    Satan's 2 Most Potent Lies to Render You Ineffective

    There's something in you so powerful that Satan doesn't want it out. Kyle Winkler reveals ...

  • Cindy Jacobs

    2017: Year of the Breakthrough

    "There will be a significant increase in miracles and signs and wonders."

  • Foot washing

    Shaking the Gates of Hell With a Basin of Water and a Towel

    "When I saw His foot, I knew He had come to take back territory the enemy had stolen from His ...

  • Growing relationship

    2017 Prophetic Word: The Supernatural Key to Growing Your Relationship With God

    It's vital that we understand what comes from God and what comes from the devil.

  • Marriage man and woman

    Why Marriage Is Not Just Between a Man and a Woman

    Marriage is a miracle. Let us treat it like one.

  • Continue Your Journey with the Holy Spirit

    Continue Your Journey with the Holy Spirit

    Follow God on the most fulfilling journey of your life with Encounter the Holy Spirit! Break away from past hurts and press into the One who wants a personal encounter with you.

  • Dream the Unimaginable In His Presence

    Dream the Unimaginable In His Presence

    Reach your full potential and be led by His Spirit. In His Presence takes you to a deeper understanding of who God is and how he communicates with us.

  • Set Your Spirit on Fire

    Set Your Spirit on Fire

    Receive the power and gifts that come through the Holy Spirit Baptism. Don’t go empty-handed; accept all that He has for you! His power is available to those who ask.

  • Put on the Full Armor of God

    Put on the Full Armor of God

    Break every stronghold with the power of the Holy Spirit. Use the power of your tongue to declare and decree the Word of God. Witness heaven move on your behalf.

Use Desktop Layout
Charisma Magazine — Empowering believers for life in the Spirit