[quote="Maureen1125, post:8, topic:231571"]
I am all for tough love.
Having grown up with ideas like that literally ~beat~ into me...
Which is why I may simply be reading my own feelings, into your words... especially since you only posted a small amount of them, and not nearly enough to fully describe what you do, outside of here... please forgive if what I say sounds like a harsh judgment or criticism of ~you~, Personally...
it's just that the ideas expressed in what you said, alone, I have seen in others, and in my own life, when too strictly applied, turn out to be hurtful, instead of helpful... I remember how those sorts of ideas hurt ~me~ as a child, and pushed me ~away~ from Church and My God, and even though they are not hurting in me now, I remember them, just to use my past hurts to teach me how ~not~ to be, with my ~own~ children.
You are the parent and whether your 11yr old likes it or not you make the rules and they obey them.
That might work, ~sometimes~, if you temper it with lots of Real Love... otherwise you run this risk:
You cannot start by dragging them to Church. If they have no faith its useless and will only cause them to resent the Church
God is not so strict with ~us~ why on Earth would He want us to be so strict with our own children? The most Precious of Gifts He can give us?
God makes the rules, and He expects and wants us to obey them, but understands, too, that in our own willfulness, smallness, and in our lack of understandings, we're going to makes mistakes and trip ourselves up... but He will ~always~ be there to pick us up and dust us off, and ~use~ our mistakes, not ~against~ us, to ~punish~ us, but to ~teach~ us, and ~show~ us Why we should listen and obey.
A rule with no Logic and Reason, no explanation or no understanding to be gained by it, is akin to a tyranny of "because I said so". When ~we~ are treated that way, in our ~adult~ lives, we get hurt and frustrated with rules that don't make sense, and I wouldn't do that to my own daughter either.
The idea of it goes hand in hand with what mothers so often say, "If your friends all jumped off of a bridge, does that mean you should, to?"
And this is the reverse, as an adult... Is it just because, in this sinful, sometimes hateful, world, that we, as adults, always have to follow the rules. Period. That there's no explanation for them, but you will be punished if you don't... does that make it right? Just because everyone else does that, to us, does it make it right to do that, to others?
We can ~feel~ when it's ~not~ sometimes, and we have to use our own good God Given judgment to discern why some rules shouldn't be followed (something that will hurt or harm ourselves, or someone else, for example) and use that judgment also, when we simply need to learn and understand ~why~ the rule exists, when it makes us uncomfortable and feeling disobedient...
And ~sometimes~ the only way to find that out, is to make a mistake, and learn from it. But... If we learn only the pain of punishment, but still lack understanding, we break it again, in defiance of the rule.
I've had teenagers. ;-) I've seen that happen more times than I can count... I remember ~being~ a teenager, and doing the same thing ~lol~ but I've also seen so many of my own friends slip into darker things, because that's all they learned, and all they knew, never having had the opportunity to learn Love and Understanding, ~with~ the rules, enough, so they might trust them...
That sometimes things have to happen for a reason and we don't know God's reason, but we have to trust that He knows what He is doing.
I agree with the idea, and it's always best to trust in God, that He knows what He is doing, 24/7,but the sentiment seems to be lacking a certain degree of understanding of how our Lord and Savior ~Works~ in us.
When I was young, and expressed some interest and excitement in an idea I had to one of my parents, he would ~always~ say things, expressed the way you did, here, most often in a bitter and punishing tone, meant to discourage anything that might sound like a "lofty" idea, as if to tell me, which he also did at times, that I wasn't good enough, or smart enough, to do the things I had hopes to do... Do that enough times, and a child will go from cheerful, and hopeful, and loving life, to depression and sadness, and never feeling "good enough"...
Granted we can't simply take off and fly for the wanting, and there's few people who have the physical strength to lift a car, but the ~love~ expressed, ~first~ in the ~idea~ of "what if I could?" and "I would use my strength to ~help~ people!"... That was a loving thought =)
Only with God can we be so strong, Only with God can we be so smart, to do His will and His work, on this Earth, and I should not want to be the one to discourage my own children, and unintentionally turn them from My Lord, instead of bringing them ~to~ Him.
I also apologize for any misunderstanding,
Peace be with you =)