by Michael Pearl from No Greater Joy – When the Worst Happens
A reader brought up an excellent point yesterday. What does Michael advocate doing if your child is the aggressor or sexual offender. So I’m posting a few more parts of this long article to answer that question, or attempt to answer it.
This is the only real point he attempts to address the idea that your own children might be the ones doing the fondling or kissing. You already know the answer, spank, spank, and spank again.
According to Age and Need
Our response should be measured according to the needs and age of the child. The key is to discern the heart of the child. Children under five may see their parents or someone on television making love. Be sure, like everything else the world offers, they are going to try kissing or fondling any other boy or girl, sibling or friend, just to see why adults find such delight According to Age and Needin it. When they find it to be quite boring, they will give up the idea and try a different flavor of ice cream. Unless they are led on by older children who do find excitement and stimulation, the little ones will not be harmed by curious investigation of their bodies or of others their age. Their exploration is certainly not desirable and may be a warning flag, but it does not mean you have a sexually active four-year-old.
If you should catch your very young children in this kind of unseemly behavior, do not blow your lid and go ballistic. First, without any show of emotion (difficult, I know,) evaluate the scene. Do they display guilt at being discovered thus? If not, then just say, “Put your clothes back on and stop that. That is what mamas and daddies do, not children.” Show a normal amount of irritation or mild anger as you would at a common infraction of the rules. Then make a show of forgetting it. But don’t forget it; keep an eye on them and make sure that is the end of it. You don’t want to attach guilt or shame to something they will otherwise forget for lack of significance. Don’t make more of the event than they made of it. Then in your regular Bible story time with them, teach the law of God concerning adultery, incest, fornication, etc., but at an appropriate level to their age and understanding.
Now what if the young children respond with strong guilt or shame? Make sure it is not just a reflection of the shock and shame on your face. If it is a true reflection of their souls, chances are this is not the first time and they are deriving some kind of illicit pleasure out of the event. They are knowingly violating their consciences. You have a sinner in the house.
It is yet important to remain calm and in control. You need to separate the kids and talk to each one individually. As much as it pains you, get the whole story. It is now important to express controlled shame and disgust at their deeds, but not so intensely as to cause them to clam up. They need to see your sadness, your tears, your grief, but this will pass, so allow them space for repentance. Don’t create an atmosphere that will prevent them from feeling loved and forgiven.
I have suggested that if the small child seems to be doing nothing more than experimenting out of curiosity, don’t highlight the moment by making a big deal out of it, and wait until later to teach them about Sodom and Gomorrah and the sin and judgment of King David. But if there is great guilt and shame, if this is a secret sin to the child, the time to teach is right now. Again, stay calm and in control. They have a spanking coming. If there are children involved who are not your own, and you feel the other parents will share your approach to discipline, and they are immediately available, they should be called to participate in the “court proceedings.” If you feel the other parents are not going to sympathize with your approach, separate out any that are not your own children and then deal with your kids alone.
After briefly defining their transgression and telling them the evil of their deeds, with all of your children that were involved present, spank them soundly. If you are not in control of your emotions, save the spanking until you are. Do no harm to the child. That would be counterproductive. They need to see a dignified judge passing sentence, not an out of control personal response of violence. If they are expecting a spanking, by getting it out of the way, they will be more focused on what you have to say. Now sit them down for a serious Bible study on their sin and the consequences.
If there are other children in the house who are aware of the foul deed, and are old enough to benefit from the teaching, they should sit in on the session, as well. As you teach, it will be appropriate to continue to express limited grief and sadness. More is caught than taught. You should have already been teaching these things to your kids in your regular Bible story lessons, but, if not, now is the time. For those who feel completely inept at teaching, I suggest the Sex Education for Children audio message that instructs kids in Biblical prohibitions against sexual sins. As a preventive measure, Deb and I addressed the subject to our children at least once a year, and from time to time they heard instruction and warning in sermons and adult Bible classes. All the children, of any age, sat in on the teaching.
QUOTING QUIVERFULL is a regular feature of NLQ – we present the actual words of noted Quiverfull leaders and ask our readers: What do you think? Agree? Disagree? This is the place to state your opinion. Please, let’s keep it respectful – but at the same time, we encourage readers to examine the ideas of Quiverfull and Spiritual Abuse honestly and thoughtfully.If this is your first time visiting NLQ please read our Welcome page and our Comment Policy!