Saturday, March 16, 2013

Peaceful Parenting

I feel a subtle shift happening in my thinking once again about children and learning and education.
Maybe not so much a shift, but more listening to what I have always believed - have truly always felt.

As my Christian faith has grown, I think I had became more rigid in my thinking regarding the roles of husbands and wives and how children should obey (which yes, they should but really it is their little hearts that must be reached.)  I think sometimes it can be easier, actually I know it is easier -  to live by rules than to live by your heart.  

I have never really been a very good rule follower - thus my back and forth with being involved with formalized churches,  homeschooling, and don't even get me started on the government and freedoms.

My faith is firmly planted, the rules are loosening and I want to be sure I am reaching the hearts of those around me.  

Yesterday I attended the first of a six Peaceful Parenting class.

Not a another person in attendance is a Christian (at least I don't think so).
I am being challenged to consider how my Christian faith can be applied to this philosophy - where parents become neither authoritarian nor permissive nor even anywhere on that spectrum  - but on a new plane of unconditional love.  I am excited to learn more but also learn how this all jives with what Jesus taught.

My gut is already telling me that it lines up perfectly.  Because Jesus is the Prince of Peace.
The class leader's own daily mantra included compassion and gratitude. 

 Yes - that is taught over and over in the New Testament.  


  1. Yes. It's a strange thing that Christian parents often feel firmness and authoritarianism is right. I have been writing about gentle parenting on my blog too. The freedom and love of Christ is why we are radical unschoolers. Most Christians think they don't fit but I have come to find they are so beautifully aligned.

  2. That sounds like an interesting philosophy of parenting. I agree with you, Jesus was the Prince of Peace so we need to have peace in our homes. I am trying very hard to be more peaceful with my youngest son, especially to talk less and listen much more. Thanks for writing about this. Will look forward to more posts on the subject.

  3. I love this post! And I completely agree. And I just signed up to follow your blog. Thanks so much for your lovely writing.

  4. I was always the odd one out among christian friends, I loved the gentle christian mothers group and still do - I ask the same questions when I am working towards my permaculture diploma and all the earth care, fair shares and people care that involves ... and I feel like the Lord Jesus is there with me in that as well.

  5. I have never really been a very good rule follower - thus my back and forth with being involved with formalized churches, homeschooling, and don't even get me started on the government and freedoms.' I could so have wrote this, well apart from the several churches bit. Only need to look at my messy garden ...

    On Unconditional Love, I agree too. You know I had a Sister/Nun-Teacher in second class at school an she was sooo nice; always a +ive comment, a smile, a soft voice even when offering "corrections". I remember at my first Holy Communion, she threw a party for us, my best friend and I sat down and started eating lollies, and Sister P came over to choose me to cut the cake, and she said: "You aren't supposed to be eating yet, we haven't said grace". We all looked at one another and laughed and I still got to cut the cake. I got it then and learned the theory later.

    I'm old enough to recall the sixties; all that Peace and Love, anti-war, anti-government, there was a lot in that. Churches used to be emblazened with posters like "God is Love" in funky writing.

    Ever since then it seems Christians think they have to flog kids to get discipline? We got seriously derailed somewhere.

    Peace, Terry

  6. It is encouraging to see more and more parents embracing grace. I grew up in a Michael-Pearl-style family (before Pearl became popular) and that is all I knew. Since we were passive children by nature my parents never really "had" to be harsh, but with my own strong children I realized after a few years that there had to be a better way. Still on a journey, tweaking and learning all the time.

  7. I have enjoyed reading your blog for a few years now- but have never commented as my faith might cause you discomfort.I parented my four children using attachment parenting philosophies and feel they are very much about love, respect, nurturing the spirit of the child as well as seeing to their physical needs.I hope you don't feel that these principles are in-congruent with your Christian values. Having been raised in an evangelical Christian home I can assure you that parenting this way is very much following the teachings of Christ.In everything I have read of your parenting you have already been following these philosophies instinctively.
    We are all in many boats traveling to the same sea-
    I wish you and your family bright blessings.

  8. This sounds like an interesting course. I find that we all get along better here when I relax a bit, which I am not great at :) I pray you will be a light to those around you at the class!

  9. That is how Id love to be with my children. I would love those classes. Id like my children to do what is asked of them without having to turn to the 'Im the Mum and I said so' card so often :)

  10. Tonya...I love that you have been a mama for long enough to have a college-aged child, and you still feel compelled to take a parenting course. That is so inspiring to me...for it is really never ever too late to shift how we do things. Thanks for reminding me that we can always reflect and change the patterns we create as parents (and as individuals). Love that!
    xo Jules

  11. I've been on a similar road, leading me to embrace "grace-based discipline". It's not passive, it's active and it takes work, and it blesses my heart to be able to respond to my children in grace.

  12. This sounds like it would be very, very interesting and I'm looking forward to hearing your thoughts as you attend the classes.

  13. While reading this blog entry, I was so pleased to read your brave words. I find your honesty so refreshing! Lately, I have been asking myself "Are you doing_______ out of love?" So often, the answer is a disappointing "No." I do find that asking myself the question helps me to find clarity and get back on track. Thank you for sharing...