Arrogant, Prideful Children

Monday march 21, 2011

The last qualities that parents want coming out of their children are arrogance and pride. My dad grew up in an age when it was embarrassing to have prideful children. There was an old saying in his day to “keep them humble.” So growing up it was advised not to affirm the children, but to focus on what they were not doing so that pride would not be built in there lives. Some of you reading this experienced this kind of training like myself. It did accomplish the purpose of not building pride, but some other negative qualities emerged in the process of having poor self-esteem and wanting to do things in a perfectionistic way. There needed to be some balance in the raising of children.

In contrast to how I was raised, I see a parenting plan of King David that went in the opposite direction. “He (David) had never rebuked him (Adonijah, David’s son) by asking, “Why do you behave as you do?”. The backdrop of this statement happens in the previous passage where Adonijah decided one day he would be king. Mind you his father was already King and had not relinquished his throne. That would be like saying today that he decided to take over his father’s business when a father was alive and running the business. Pretty arrogant don’t you think. But this attitude of Adonijah didn’t just express itself one day. This attitude had been cultivated over a period of time by the lack of confrontation of David on other things that he had said or done over the years. When a parent fails or choose not to discipline a child as they are growing up, certain negative qualities begin to emerge.

The wisest man on earth was Solomon who wrote some passages on sparing the rod and spoiling a child you can look at in your spare time (Proverbs 13:24; 22:15 23;13-14; 26:3; 29:15). It is interesting to note that Solomon, Adonijah’s brother, saw this lack of discipline manifested in his brother. And who did David put on the throne in place of Adonijah–Solomon. Solomon learned from observation that no discipline leads to arrogance and pride. If you read Proverbs, written by Solomon, you will see many passages on pride as well.

This journey has many forks to travel and we need to choose wisely as we raise our children.

About James Gorton

I am happily married to Nadine, a person I've known for 20+ years. She and her late husband owned Airpark Auto Service where I took my car for years. Four years after my wife died we began dating and the rest is history. We have a blended family of 6 children between us and love visiting them across this country. We recently had our third grandchild between us. We love to hike, bike and ski. I am a psychologist and do relational life coaching for marriages and families primarily. I love what I do and never get tired of seeing marriages and families move to more healthy places in their lives. Five years ago my oldest daughter Deborah encouraged me to begin writing my thought into a blog I call my Jlog (Jim's log). I have become more and more passionate in connecting everyday experiences to spiritual truths. I hope that as you read my Jlog, you will gain insight into your personal life and experience true growth in your personal and relational life.
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