Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Favorite Quotes from Heartfelt Discipline

Discipline is ultimately about relationship. Punishment may sometimes be necessary, but instruction is the primary purpose of biblical discipline. The purpose of discipline is to set a person on God’s way of righteousness. Discipline isn’t just controlling behavior; it is about directing a child’s life toward God. We often aim at the wrong target. We set our sights on stopping and changing a child’s wrong behavior and we miss the real target of shaping and influencing their heart.

Childhood discipline is a process; not a formula, a list of rules, or a set of laws.
Our confidence doesn’t come from how well we keep laws and follow rules; our confidence in parenting comes from walking in the power of the Holy Spirit and learning how to discipline our children by faith.

Anything you do that is not done in the Spirit is done in the flesh and has no eternal value in God’s eyes. Believe that He is living in you, guiding you, and helping you- and then live though you really believe it.

You can’t create Christian character in your children; that’s God’s job. Christian character comes only from Christ, and only a heart changed by the Holy Spirit can exhibit the character of Christ. True christian character is not learned, it is released. Christian character is the fruit of the Spirit.

What motivates you to do good? Is it the negative messages that point to what you are not doing or is it the more positive messages of encouragement that points to what you are becoming?

Encouragement can take many forms, but it isn’t biblical encouragement without the Word of God at its heart.

Catch your children doing good, and when you do, encourage them.

There is never a record of Jesus speaking to a child in a harsh tone. He was always speaking with gentleness. Our children are not our adversaries. Though our children’s hearts are corrupted by sin, they are not hardened sinners who have made conscious choices to reject the Savior. Our children are simply immature and childish. That’s why children need the grace of love and compassion, not the legal harshness of shame and guilt.
Brethren, if a man is overtaken in any trespass, you who are spiritual restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness, considering yourself lest you also be tempted. 2 Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.
Galatians 6:1-2

God’s design for parents and the family is to provide the primary socializing influences in a child’s life. Where once the family was the center of a child’s recreational life, now media, sports, and other activities keep children entertained and amused.

One revealing way to consider the difference between light and darkness is to look at today’s media content through the lens of the 10 Commandments and ask yourself the question: “Which of God’s commandments are being honored by the media that entertain and inform my children?”

The heart of parenting is not just about raising an obedient, well-behaved child, but about shaping your child’s heart to follow God and placing his feet on the same path of life that you and those before you have walked.

There is no formula or set of rules to follow. We just need to follow the Holy Spirit who lives within our heart and guides us to become the parent our children need as we walk together with God.

If you’ve ever walked a mountain trail, you know how much of the wonderful scenery of creation you will miss if all you do is look down at the trail. Unfortunately, many faithful parents are missing the real joy of walking the path of life because they agonize over every step they take with their children. They worry about tripping, fret about falling, and obsess about every change in the trail. They make progress, but only with much work and stress and worry. But you don’t need to be that kind of parent. God wants you to get your focus off your feet- to look up and ahead to see where you’re really going as a parent, and to give your children the freedom to do the same. He wants you to enjoy the journey!

You can buy the book Heartfelt Discipline HERE.


  1. Are you reading this right now? I am, too! We bought this book when it first came out (I think in 2003), and then we never got around to reading it. Then I got the updated version a couple of years ago, and I'm just now working through it. So far I highly recommend it! :)

  2. I just finished reading it about a month ago. I really enjoyed it! I had the book for awhile too before reading it. :) For the first time in a long time I don't have any books I'm reading right now. I'm sure by next week I'll have another one. I love reading at night after everyone is in bed. I think it helps me wind down to fall asleep.



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