“The wise woman builds her house, but with her own hands the foolish one tears hers down.”Proverbs 14:1 (NIV)
When her kids were home from school, Dana felt like she spent the entire time nagging them to do their homework and chores. More than once fights broke out, and she spent her afternoons arguing with her children.
She felt like her home was in chaos and wasn’t sure what to do. On the weekends, she worked as a volunteer at a hospital. The volunteer coordinator was a warm, elderly woman named Elizabeth.
When she shared what was going on, Elizabeth listened sympathetically. Then, she shared Proverbs 14. “Someone once told me that, every day, a woman either builds her house or tears it down. When you nag, it’s a way of controlling the situation. It may make you feel better temporarily, but it rarely gets results.”
Dana nodded. “So, how do I get results, instead of yelling and insults?”
Elizabeth said, “Remind your kids once about what to do. Share what the consequences of not obeying are, and let them make their choices. If they don’t listen, then gently but firmly allow them to suffer the results. That’s what God does for His children.”
Dana took Elizabeth’s words to heart. It was hard at first because her kids challenged her resolve to see if she’d stick with the consequences she’d laid out. But, after seeing her stand firm, her kids quickly began to listen to her.
This decreased Dana’s stress and made her afternoons with her children more relaxed and enjoyable.
God, help me to build up my house. Give me wisdom when it comes to training my kids and others that are under my influence. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.