What's Different about Peacemaker Parenting?
Peacemaker Parenting shifts away from traditional parenting in that it views parental authority as coming alongside our children to lead, guide, disciple, and help them grow and mature, instead of standing over them to make demands of them and punish them when they don't obey. And our reason for this? It's exactly what God has done with us. First, He gave us Jesus as a model of how to live out His original plan for humanity. But He also gave us a helper - the Holy Spirit to lead, guide, disciple, and help us obey Christ.

Peacemaking authority
Peacemaker Parenting is parenting from a place of authority. But we are careful to use our authority, strength, and power in right ways and for good ends. We must love our children with a self-denying, self- giving, self-sacrificing love that looks beyond ourselves and to the ultimate good of our children. For herein lies the paradigm shift: how we parent our children is rooted in what we believe about God and how He treats us. It isn't until we understand and fully embrace that His kindness, not threat of punishment or promise of reward, that leads us to repentance, that we can choose to model that kindness to our children.

"When He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will GUIDE you into all truth." John 16:13
 "But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will TEACH you all things." John 14:26
 "But when the HELPER comes, whom I shall send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth who proceeds from the Father, He will testify of Me." John 15:26
 "Likewise the Spirit also HELPS in our weaknesses." Romans 8:26
Parenting with peace and purpose, as peacemakers, requires us to recognize that being in authority is not about exerting power over our children, but about coming alongside them and sharing safety, security, wisdom, and discernment because they do not posses them on their own.

Parenting with authoritative authority vs. authoritarian authority. 
Our approach to authority plays a pivotal role in shaping the character of our children. And there's little doubt that how we model authority has spiritual implications as well. We see examples of authoritative authority throughout the New Testament, not only in the ministry and teaching of Jesus, but also in the formation of the early church. It comes through clearly in Paul's encouragement and correction of the churches in  Corinth, Thessalonica, and Galatia. While authoritarian authority seeks to shape a child's behavior through (often rigid) rules and punishments, authoritative authority seeks to shape a child's character by modeling the compassionate and merciful nature of God, allowing room for grace and forgiveness when mistakes are made. 

Wondering what this looks like in action? Check out these posts for some ideas:


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