Proverbs 29:15 “The rod and reproof give wisdom”
- Discipline should be a spiritual encounter with God, not just a physical encounter with you (Proverbs 3:11-12; Hebrews 12:5-11).
- Rules should be clear and posted for all children. They should include consequences for disobedience and benefits for obedience (Deuteronomy 6: 4-9).
- Determine beforehand the number of swats for each stated offense and the instrument to be used to administer the swats. Use a neutral object, never the hand, to spank. Tell him beforehand the number of swats he will be receiving (Proverbs 22:15).
- Deal with the child promptly, but in private; your intention is to discipline your child, not humiliate him (Proverbs 13:24; 19:18).
- Be sure the child understands and knows that what he did was wrong. He needs to know that the discipline is because he has sinned, not because you are angry. If you are angry, wait until you can administer the discipline in love (James 1:19, 20).
- Have the child grab his ankles or bend over a bed with arms extended. Be sure his hands stay out of the way. Apply swats to buttocks or the upper area of the legs. Be careful not to hit the child’s tailbone, back or knees (Proverbs 29:15). (Never punch your child with a fist; never kick him; never slap him in the face or on the head. That is abuse and is always unacceptable.)
- After administering the discipline, take him in your arms and let him know you love him, but that God calls on you to discipline him when he disobeys (Proverbs 19:18).
- Pray with your child. After you pray aloud, encourage your child to pray and seek God’s forgiveness. Also, encourage your child to seek forgiveness from any other offended parties, including yourself. With younger children, you may have him repeat a prayer after you to teach him how to pray and ask forgiveness. Your consistent modeling will teach the value of genuine prayer about his character development (Ephesians 6:4).
- Review with your child how he was tempted. Develop a biblical plan of response so he can make a godly choice the next time he is tempted in the same or a similar way (1Corinthians 10:13, 14).