If you have ever spent time with young children, you quickly realize that every child is under a delusion. It is the delusion that life should work their way.
It begins in the toddler years, when a one cherub wants a toy that the other one has. They take it, because they want it and believe they should have it. They fight, hit and bite when another child takes the toy back, because of course, he wanted it too.
Toddlers are under a delusion. They believe that they should have what they want, when they want it, and how they want it.
You see, each child believes that they are a little king and that life in their imaginary kingdom should work the way that they want it to. They have no higher agenda than their own personal happiness. They have selfish demands and they’ll do whatever it takes to feed those desires. Pouting, tantrums, hitting and anger are all ways that they manipulate to get their own way. They are self serving and want others to serve them as well(by the way, I am not just picking on toddlers. Many adults act this way too, unfortunately-minus the biting.)
They are building little kingdoms for themselves and it is our job to teach them to build God’s kingdom.
2 Corinthians 5:14-15 teaches us that God died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised.
Every action of selfishness and self serving needs to be confronted with the gospel. We were once serving sin and self, but now we are serving another King. If we try to explain their behavior away or worse, if we give into their demands, we are actually cementing them into their own delusion.
It is easy in the mundane to fail to see the bigger picture behind our kids bad/sinful behavior.
- Sin causes all of us to be self focused and self oriented, instead of God and others focused.
- Sin causes us to want others to love us as much as we love ourselves, instead of being humble and loving God and others first.
- Sin causes us to view people as either a “way to get what we want” or an obstacle “in the way of what we want.”
Don’t just look at your child’s negative behavior and scold about that. Look deeper. Ask them what they loved most when they decided to sin. Ask them why they thought that sinning to get what they wanted was okay. Whose kingdom are they trying to advance?
Moms, especially if you have teens, these discussions should be frequent as you disciple your teen daughter or son. Help them to understand their own heart. Let them know that you understand their struggle, because it is also your own struggle. Weeding out our sinful desires is part of the sanctification process.
Linked to Courtney here