Thursday, March 30, 2006

Putting the Smack on Junior's Behind

In honor of lighter posting, and because my brain is toast, I thought I would share/confess something with you all about child-rearing. First off, let the record show that I am a spanker of children. I confess that I am even tempted to sometimes spank the children of other people. The truth be known, I have often seen children in the mall and other places that I had to restrain myself from begging the parents to bring out the rod.

I have plenty of Biblical reasons for this, and at least one Benjamin Franklin reason as well. Ben said, "Spare the rod; spoil the child." The Lord was a little harsher than Mr. Franklin, however, He said, "He who spares his rod hates his son, but he who doves him disciplines him promptly" (Proverbs 13:24). I love, therefore I spank.

There are, I believe, several reasons for the spanking of children. One reason is that sin has a consequence. You sin; you get punished. So, if little Ethan toddles over to daddy's cell phone, picks it up, and calls Tokyo; he gets a spankin'. He knows he isn't supposed to pick up daddy's cell phone, (he has already slimed one to death with vociferous amounts of slobber) but he does it anyway. One pop with the wooden ladle to the bad of the buttocks and the point is driven home with wailing and gnashing of teeth. Futhermore, the cell phone is rescued. It is also for correction. Hopefully, the punishment will drive away the foolishness bound up in their little hearts.

In fact, I am quite stunned at how fast Ethan learned what "no" means, and I am equally surprised at how quickly he began to completely ignore it. I have a little basket sitting on my desk that holds a good deal of change. I do not want Ethan getting that thing because, well, he'll eat all my money. I don't want to be digging through diapers to get my Susan B. Anthony back, so I am teaching him not to touch it. One day, as expected, Ethan toddles over to the basket and picks it up. I tell him no, that's daddy's, leave it alone or daddy will have to spank. He understood. I know that he understood because he immediately began crying when he realized that he couldn't play with it. This, of course, made him want to play with it even more than before. He just couldn't take no for an answer.

Unfortunately for my son, I have a sort of an analytical mind. I know from Scripture that my son is a depraved little miscreant waiting to happen. To compound the problem, hunting season is over and I have no other prey to stalk. So as an experiment, I told Ethan to leave that thing alone and I walked out of the room with him. Then...I hid and waited. Sure enough, as soon as I was out of sight, he headed into my office and straight for the little change basket. I am not kidding you, the boy is 16 months old, and when he stood in front of that basket he actually looked around to see if anyone was watching. He isn't sneaky enough yet, so he didn't spot me peering at him with a wooden spoon from behind the door. He reached out, just like that Adam of old, and grabbed daddy's change basket. HUZZAH! I jumped out like a hunter shooting ducks from a blind in the bayou. One crisp and a few tears later and junior and I had things worked out about daddy's change basket. He wasn't, of course, crying because I had really hurt him physically. He was crying because he got caught and punished and his dreams of eating my nickels and dimes had gone up in smoke.

So, there you have it. I spank my son. I like it very much when I break out the wooden spoon and my son goes limp like a spaghetti noodle. It means that he is learning that certain actions have consequences. And, in the end, it keeps him safe. I love my son, and so I spank him. I also hug him and talk to him and tickle him. But those are different topics for a different post. I'll leave you with one final nugget from Solomon the Wise:

Do not withhold correction from a child, for if you beat him with a rod, he will not die. You shall beat him with a rod, and deliver his soul from hell.


MColvin said...

Wisdom beyond your years my friend...can you get this method into the school systems?

UncleNut said...

It's refreshing to hear that my wife and I are not the only ones who love our own kids. :-)

Josh Buice said...


I laughed as I read your post. I have a 9 month old daughter who displays many of the same actions as your son. This morning she tried to get into the trash basket in my office. When my wife picked it up and placed it on top of the fire place, she broke down with tears. She knows when she is doing something that is disallowed.

My wife and I are at the stage of instilling in her head the meaning of "NO!" - but we are not to the spanking stage as of yet. I can assure you - I feel the same way you do about child discipline!

I love to hunt as well - and your story about stalking your son just caused me to laugh out loud.

God bless,

Josh Buice
Practical Theology Discussions

Jim said...

Brad, another good post. This issue is so profound to not even be funny.

Our enemy knows that if he can get us to forgo discipline then our little darlings will grow up to disregard authority and become rebellious unprofitable members of society.

God bless,

Mike Perrigoue said...

Great post, Brad! My wife and I have many stories like yours. It has reminded us to set up some training sessions with our youngest. We did it with our oldest (because we had time) and definitely see a difference in her response to our "no" when she was the age of our little one now. sessions are the way to go.

We love our precious little girls too much not to spank them!

Jonathan Moorhead said...

It would be interesting to know your take on spanking children even though it is against the law. BTW, I agree with you.

Daniel said...

Against the law???

Thank God, even though Canada has turned into a liberal cess pool - here at least corporal punishment is still legal - though the UN is working night and day to remove that right.

Mike Perrigoue said...

I just checked on Washington State...and praise God...spankings are still legal.

Jonathan, you scared me!