Watch the video above and talk about it with a group or mentor. Learn more.

Parents don’t have the power to change the hearts of their kids. Only God can do that.

Key Points:

  • Power Tool #1 is Fear. You hope to motivate your kids by yelling, intimidation and punishment.
  • Power Tool #2 is Reward. You entice your kids to do what you want by offering rewards.
  • Power Tool #3 is Guilt/Shame. You try to make your kids feel guilty for their disobedience and hope that shame will move them toward compliance.
  • God hasn’t burdened you with the power to make change in others. That’s his job. 

Quote This:

Ephesians 6:1-4 Children, obey your parents because you belong to the Lord,for this is the right thing to do.“Honor your father and mother.” This is the first commandment with a promise: If you honor your father and mother, “things will go well for you, and you will have a long life on the earth.” Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger by the way you treat them. Rather, bring them up with the discipline and instruction that comes from the Lord.

See Also: Parenting

Talk About It
  1. What is your initial reaction to this topic? What jumped out at you?
  2. Describe your parenting style. Would you say your current strategies come from a place of trying to control your kids’ behaviors? Explain.
  3. Is there a difference between trying to influence your kids and trying to control them? Explain.
  4. Which of the three power tools do you tend to use most? Why has that been your “go to” tactic? In your opinion, how has or hasn’t it been effective?
  5. In your own words, describe the difference between temporary, momentary change and true heart change. Why is heart change the best kind of change?
  6. Read Ephesians 6:1-4. What does this passage say to kids? What does it say to parents? In what ways do you need to adjust your parenting style to point your kids to God and his best for their lives?
  7. Write a personal action step based on this conversation.