“Even though Jesus was God’s Son, he learned obedience from the things he suffered” (Hebrews 5:8, NLT).
Jesus is the picture of humble obedience to the will of God. In this article, Dr. Scott Turansky, co-founder of the National Center for Biblical Parenting, provides practical considerations to help children learn the value of obedience.
Children need to learn to obey, but not merely to make their parents’ and teachers’ lives easier. We don’t teach kids to obey for our own convenience. We teach obedience because hidden within that character quality are a number of principles that will help children to be successful in life.
When kids learn obedience, they learn to consider the needs of others. They learn to be a little less selfish. They learn to fit into the agenda of those around them. They learn to submit to authority.
Obedience involves learning to do what you’re asked even when you think you have a better way. The person who has learned obedience knows how to listen to an instruction, how to follow through without being watched, and how to report back when the job is done.
The children who learn obedience when they’re young will make better students and better employees when they get older. Furthermore, they will be happier and enjoy life more.
We’re not talking about blind obedience. We want our children to learn to evaluate instructions; but evaluating instructions is an advanced skill. First children must learn cooperation; otherwise they end up believing that every time they don’t like a request, they’re justified to resist it. These children remain selfish and grow up to be whiners and complainers, not able to receive an instruction without an argument.
God knew what he was doing when he gave the instruction to children to “obey your parents.” He knew that learning obedience when you’re young pays off greatly as you get older.