Q. I get so mad with my kids. How can I maintain a loving attitude when I’m about to explode?
A. Take a good dose of Proverbs 15:1-4, 18 and come to grips with the truth that anger only breeds more conflict!
Of course kids drive us dilly sometimes. But responding to them with anger is not only ineffective, it’s counterproductive and robs you of your dignity, authority and the wonderful opportunity of meaningful impartation into your children’s lives.
Withdraw from explosive situations until you have control of your anger. Then, with strong faith, believe God has required you to parent your child on His behalf – and teach the child, with love, compassion and firmness, what God wants. Operating from a platform of anger, hurt, disappointment and the like, and not from a platform of faith, is sin – see Rom 14:23.
Once-spoken harsh words can’t be recalled. With a soft (dignified and godly) answer (Prov 15:1) tell your children what’s upsetting you and give them positive direction. Focusing on inappropriate behaviour, rather than word-bashing them helps them know exactly how they need to change. And by focusing on behaviour, you can reassure them of your unconditional love for them as little people. (See Matt 11:25-29; Titus 3:3-8.)