Over the years I’ve been asked many times how to make a child behave. After church I’ve had moms come and ask me how in the world I got my 8 children to sit quietly and respectfully through the church service (we never did children’s church). I’ve been told that I have NO idea what it is like to have a strong-willed child (like with 8 children I wouldn’t get at least ONE) so I wouldn’t understand their dilemmas with their unruly children.
This last comment just makes me laugh!
None of us have children that just POP out with pure and obedient hearts. Sure we may have some children who are complacent but complacent and obedient are not the same thing.
Discipline is an important part of child rearing, but it is actually just a small part. In our home, one of the best pieces of advice we EVER got (way back when our oldest was 6 months old) was to memorize scripture!
You are probably thinking:
- I just can’t memorize scripture – it’s just too hard
- my children memorize verses at Awanas already
- we don’t have time to do this, our days are already packed with school, sports and church stuff
- I have a really bad memory
Let me tell you, I always struggled with scripture memory. My husband is a WHIZ at this, even having whole books of the bible memorized. The thing I found, however, when we first started with scripture memory when my oldest was two years old (yes, I said two!) was to memorize a PASSAGE of scripture rather than random verses. Wow, was that eye opening for me! When I memorized a passage of say 7-20 verses, I had a whole idea or story to hang my hat on, so to speak.
Our first passage ever memorized was Prov 6:6-11 about the ant. We were working with my daughter on diligence and being faithful to do what she was told and to learn to do her chores even without being told. The proverb about the ant was the perfect choice! I wanted to help her as much as possible with her memory so I got little index cards in a spiral bound pack and drew pictures (I am NOT an artist, but what does a two year old know!) of each verse to help trigger her memory of that verse.
Later, I went to a homeschool conference and there was a family there who demonstrated how their family memorized scripture with motions. I was fascinated and thought this would be a much easier way of doing it with more than one child. Here is an example of how it works for us. (This took 12 takes before we could get it without TONS of giggling…we couldn’t do it without ANY giggling, though!)
So, do not hesitate but JUMP IN to including scripture memory as part of your family life. You will be so glad you did!