Tag Archives: grace

Grace And Discipline


Two different children acting out in two different ways sparked the idea for this post today. One was a 3rd grade boy on our Rangers class… the other was my 1.5 year old son. They both were acting out in ways that were unusual for them… and because it was unusual… grace was given.

My son, or “Dunder” as we call him, was having a rough day yesterday. He was crying uncontrollably any time his Mom walked away from him. He was sensitive, whiny and just all around bad… but in a weird way. Just when we were about to pack him in a box and ship him away we theorized that he may be teething and gave him some baby Tylenol. His behavior improved within the hour. The boy was in pain apparently.

Later that evening at our Wednesday church services I was brought a couple of young men who had exchanged blows while picking up the game room for pre-class worship time. I listened to the excuses and issued my standards. I told them I’d be talking to their parents and that I wanted to be able to tell them that the boys had been good the rest of the evening. I told them to sit separately and go back into worship. One of the two was crying uncontrollably the entire time… which was unlike him… but I figured he was just upset I was talking to his parents.

Later that evening I got a call from his teacher. He was causing problems in class and was refusing to sit in time out. I was ready to put the fear of God in this kid. I was going to lay down the law and be absolutely sure he knew that he could not act this way in class and expect to get away with it. I was going to call the parents out from church… and possibly read them the riot act as well.

I had the child meet me out in the hall with the teacher… I felt my heart soften toward the boy. Kids who cause two sets of problems in same night, who don’t do it every week, are probably going through something. I asked him what the trouble was tonight. He looked to the ground and said that he hadn’t slept well the night before. I now noticed how red his eyes were. The boy was exhausted! No wonder he was acting out.

All of my plans flew out the window… grace for his situation came in it’s place. I told him that even when he’s sleepy he needs to make good choices. That while I was still going to talk to his parents, I didn’t want to add to it that he wasn’t obeying his teachers. I told him that he would go back into class and service his time… but that he could lay his head on the table for the rest of class if he wished to rest.

I tend to be a person who sticks tightly to the rules and policies… and this serves me well most of the time. But I always run the risk of doing so blindly, with little consideration to the people involved. My prayer is that God will help me and those like me to always be ready to forget what they deserve and be ready to give the grace that He has shown me so often.