I have had many people including family members say that Tom and I are "too hard" on Julia. I can't even count the times I've heard "she's just a kid". "She's only 2." Oh, the list goes on and on. Tom and I believe that our commission as parents is to raise her in a way that would shape her to be a women filled to the brim with Christ's love. Julia is old enough to know right from wrong. She can be manipulative at times and she is very saavy when it comes to stacking us up against eachother. Sin is not learned, we are born with it seeped inside of us. We whole-heartedly believe that now is the time to help form and shape her into a respectful and kind child who will grow in the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ. Thats the goal!. Parenting isn't filled with doom and gloom and constant correction, but I do believe that there is a place for correction and discipline. Tom and I understand that children need boundaries, in fact, they yearn for them. There is comfort in knowing your boundaries and children thrive in an environment where there are clear cut boundaries.
With that being said we believe that there is also a strong obligation as parents to encourage our child. Encouragement in the terms we use is more than merely praise for an act or good behavior. We strive to help Julia internalize positive feelings about herself through interactive encouragement with us. We are raising Julia to feel good about who God made her to be and to acknowledge that He is responsible for her gifts, abilities, and accomplishments. We want her to feel good about Jesus in her, enabling and empowering her for the mission of her life!
By no means do we think we are perfect or that we have this all figured out. We struggle and sometimes anger gets the best of us. We pray, we read and we surround ourselves with people who propel us in a Godly way of parenting. Above all, we see such an overwhelmingly awesome task that God has given us in being parents. We take it seriously and know that we play a large role in the molding and refining process for our child. It is humbling, it is scary, and it is such a blessing!