How We Correct Our Children
I am far from being a parenting expert, but after having a toddler and comparing approaches to parenting, I think I can safely assert this observation. I have noticed that when our kids do something worth correcting or disciplining, there is a temptation for many parents to yell— or at least raise their voices— at their kid from a distance. I feel this temptation often, myself. And I don’t pretend to think this is always bad; after all, if your kid is about to do something self-destructive or hurt someone else, it might put the appropriate level of weight on the moment and stop them before it’s too late. But this is assuming they are not numb to it from us doing it so often.
The problem comes in when we miss opportunities to connect with our kids as we are correcting or disciplining them. I've seen that there is something so much more powerful when we get down on their level, look them in the eye, touch them, and speak with a seriousness void of anger. When we do this, we communicate that we are there with them even as we are correcting them. This also reflects the very nature of God, who reveals himself as Emmanuel, “God with us,” even when we are deserving of discipline.