Should parents ever raise their voices when talking to their children? That’s the topic AMBrewster’s going to tackle in today’s episode. Determining God’s mind on this subject is a must for Christian parents.
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“Is It Okay to Get Mad?” (episode 153)
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Click "Read More" for today’s Episode Notes and Transcript.
Click the link below to download the PDF.
It seems like I’m making it hard on myself recently by choosing challenging topics.
“Why did I choose to talk about yelling parents? Did I really think I could find the answer to this question in the Bible?!”
Actually, yeah. I’ll tell you why . . . in a minute.
Last time I introduced you to LSR. If you want to get the most out of your Truth.Love.Parent. experience, we recommend you L -- Listen and Learn, S -- Subscribe and Share, and R -- Rate and Review. Doing these six simple steps will help you glean the most from this program and help others at the same time. You only have to Subscribe, Rate, and Review once. And for those of you who’ve already done that — since you’re already Listening and Learning right now — all you have to do is Share this episode, and you will have completed your LSR for today! See how easy that is?
Okay, so what does the Bible have to say about yelling?
Let me start off by informing you that this is not going to be a show that tries to justify yelling and screaming at your children. But, let me also say that this is not going to be a show that advocates parental inside-voices.
I believe there are people who yell at their kids for very wrong reasons, but I also believe there are people who don’t yell at their kids for very wrong reasons. And today we’re going to really plunge into the Scriptures to reveal and answer this tension.
And while we do it, we’re going to exercise a very important life skill. It’s called applying the Bible to ourselves. Episode 44 was about applying truth to our children’s lives, but how do we expect to be able to apply God’s Word to them if we can’t apply it to us first?
Listen, I know you’ve yelled at your kids. I have too. But have you ever stopped to consider whether an Ambassador Parent should do that? And others of you may have managed to never raise your voice, but I need to ask you the same question: Should an Ambassador Parent do that? And, I’m not talking about whether or not it’s socially or culturally acceptable. If we’re First-Followers of Christ and functioning as His Ambassador in our homes, we’d better know for certain how God wants us talking to our kids. And that includes whether I should raise my voice or not.
Hopefully, your mind is scanning through passages trying to see if there’s any verse or principle that supports your actions. And that’s good became today we’re going to look at some Biblical commands, principles, and illustrations that will ultimately be your responsibility to apply to your parenting.
So, let’s get started by laying a groundwork.
The Pharisees got themselves into trouble not when they developed standards to keep them away from sin, but when they told everyone else that God wanted them to keep the Pharisees’ standards as well.
So, as we discuss this topic, please use the biblical principles we study to develop grounded convictions and standards. But don’t allow your convictions to cause you to judge someone else for not following your standards.
So, here we go. What are some biblical principles and illustrations that could be applied to this topic?
Let’s start with some clear biblical commands. We will go through these quickly, and I’m going to spit out a lot of references, so please just follow the train of thought and you can always download the free Episode Notes PDF which is linked in the description
Now, let’s look at some biblical principles. Remember, principles are not commands, but they provide information that gives us boundaries within which to live.
The “don’t yell at your kids” side of the debate is silently rejoicing right now. Though these verses don’t contain commands, it’s clear that strife is avoided when we don’t sin by foolishly letting our mouths run, and — instead — use a soft answer.
But there’s another interesting principle in the Bible. I call it the Principle of Divine Shouting, and there are five main categories.
There are so many other verses I could have added to this list, so I encourage you to get online or use a good Bible app like Olive Tree and just search the words “shout,” “cry,” and “cried.” It’s not a word search many people do, but it will open many of your eyes.
But the point is, based off the above principles, we have an important realization — sometimes God commands us to yell, and sometimes He commands us not to.
Lastly, I want to consider just one biblical illustration. You’ve been so patient with me, and I want to respect your time. I think the commands and principles we’ve seen will fit together perfectly in this passage. And when w’re done we should have at least a good start to know for sure whether our yelling glorifies God.
Here’s the illustration. Matthew 21, Mark 11, Luke 19, and John 2 all relate a staggering incident. Let me read John 2:13-17.
“The Passover of the Jews was at hand, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. In the temple he found those who were selling oxen and sheep and pigeon, and the money-changers sitting there. And making a whip of cords, he drove them out of the temple, with the sheep and oxen. And he poured out the coins of the money-changers and overturned their tables. And he told those who sold pigeons, ‘Take these things away; do not make my Father’s house a house of trade.’ His disciples remembered that it was written, ‘Zeal for your house will consume me.’”
I know many of you are familiar with this scene. The messiah, Jesus, God Himself just made a whip and used it to drive the animals and people out of the temple. He’s physically turned over tables and threw money on the floor. And though the word “told” has many possible meanings, it can refer to a haranguing; which is a forceful or angry speech.
Now, many people do not like this picture of the Savior. It rarely shows up in movies or Easter plays. It seems almost at odds for the meek and mild servant-Lamb of God. But I believe this account is recorded in all four gospels for a number of reasons. By the way, Jesus’ miraculous birth wasn’t even recorded in all four Gospels, but this was. This passage shows us exactly what God means by, “Be angry but do not sin.”
Is it ever appropriate to get angry with your children? Is it ever appropriate to yell? In order to answer those questions, we must ask ourselves this:
If you haven’t listened to Episode 38 or don’t remember what The Communication House is, what I’m about to say may confuse you a bit. Just listen to that show, and it’ll make sense.
If my child has stepped outside The Communication House, and I’ve quietly tried to coax him back in with God’s truth in God’s love for God’s glory, but the conversation escalates to a point where there are only two options left, I will occasionally go with option one, and sometimes I’ll decide to move straight to option two. Option two is the discussion must be tabled and the child given time to calm down. However, sometimes I’ve found that — like Jesus in the temple — you can startle people back into their senses. Jesus could have gone into the temple and preached and yelled all He wanted, but He went all out — including personally making a whip for the occasion. When I’m dealing with a person who has refused to communicate in The House, and they’ve just now started yelling, I will raise my voice and intensity to match theirs in an attempt to bring them back down.
Listen, we’ve discussed in Episode 37 that when a child is being a terrorist, we’re engaging in a spiritual war. If a controlled, loving, War Shout awakens their senses and allows them to cease their sinful tirade long enough for the Truth I’m speaking to pierce their hearts and drive them to a willing submission to God — that will be warrant for a Shout of Joy to God!
But we must be diligent! I cannot stress this enough. Too many of us have made it a habit of yelling when we’re selfishly angry. Every time we raise our voice, we’re sinning against God. For people like that, it will take much repentance, growth, and time before I would recommend you try this tactic.
And yes, there are other ways to quiet a terrorist.
And now we’ve made full circle. As I said before, I’m not saying you must or you must not ever raise your voice to your children during an argument. I led you through this journey not so that you would have a definite answer from me on the subject, but so that you could learn to find God’s answer for you and your family.
Please check out the episode notes at EvermindMinistries.com for a list of the passages I discussed today. You mustn’t formulate an uninformed response. To be an intentional, premeditated parent, you and your spouse must go to God’s Word to decide whether your yelling, correcting, feeding, buying, playing, discipling, working, and celebrating truly honors the Lord.
I’d love to have you join me next time. Our show will be entitled “The Millennial Pendulum: Parenting a Post-Millennial.” That will apply to many of you, and for those with Millennials still in the home, it can actually apply significantly to your families as well.
Don’t forget to LSR today,
And remember, life is full of difficult decisions, but God’s Word has everything you need, and we’re hear to point you to it.
Have an amazing week.
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