Parenting styles have lasting effects on children

Linn Winters
Apr 30, 2017    42m
Two possible parenting styles are child centered or parent centered. Pastor Linn illustrates both styles of parenting and what to watch out for in each. Video recorded at Chandler, Arizona.

messageRegarding Grammar:

This is a transcription of the sermon. People speak differently than they write, and there are common colloquialisms in this transcript that sound good when spoken, and look like bad grammar when written.

Linn Winters: 01:25 Hey Cornerstone. I'm glad you're here.

Linn Winters: 01:27 I told them when they were making that video. I said, you know what? You shouldn't have shown us inside the bedroom. He should of just had that kid makes, ah, a terrifying face and then we all could have imagined. You know, like, uh, any, anyways. Hey, uh, glad that you guys are here. Uh, I think this series is gonna try to be hugely practical for you. Uh, it's gonna answer some questions. It's gonna bring clarity to stuff. You're, you're gonna have moments you go, "Oh, you know, I was kind of leaning that way and that just gives me permission to have the and - and you just. Guys, I just, I think it has huge, huge, helpfulness written all over it for us. And I know, I know there are some of us in the room and you go, look, "I'm not even a parent yet," and, and you probably will be. And, uh, it's going to be helpful, but, let, let me even say this.

Linn Winters: 02:08 It's going to be interesting as we go through the series, if you'll even just put on the lens of your relationship with God. Because you realize God is our heavenly father and so much of what we're going to discuss about parenting is actually how he parents us. And you're going to see all sorts of places where you go, "oh my goodness, he is the father. I am the child. That's exactly the wrestling match we're in together right now. That's why I'm struggling. That's why he's treating m-." I'm just gonna tell you, it's going to be hugely helpful, even if you're not a parent. And then I know we've got some grandparents in the room and you just go, "look, I've already screwed up my kids. It's, it's done and, and-." In my office, on my wall I've got some pictures and moments. You know my, graduating with my master's degree. Just stuff up there that are huge life changing moments.

Linn Winters: 02:56 The pictures of two of my grandparents, hang on that wall and I'm, and I'm just telling you guys. If you're a grandparent, you have the capacity to still have, just, huge effect in the lives of not only your children but your grandchildren. And don't, don't miss this moment to hone those skills, to be a little sharper with this. So guys, I'm just telling you, all of us ought to be leaning in, uh, for this conversation.

Linn Winters: 03:20 So here we go. Uh, as we start this though, I just want to say welcome to our San-Tan Campus, our Scottsdale Campus. To the 5:00 PM service is going to be watching this. We've got a bunch of people right now in the venue. We've got people in overflow. Just, I don't care where you have joined us from. We're just glad that you're part of this conversation and part of Cornerstone, uh, with us.

Linn Winters: 03:40 Now, here's what I got to say to you. Uh, you're gonna hear something. I guarantee, you're gonna hear some things over the next six weeks together. And when you hear it, you're going to go, "I think they're totally wrong about that. I, that's, that's just not what I did when I parented or that's not what I've been doing and it feels like what I've been doing-s been reasonably effective. And I, I, I just think they're all wet on that particular, uh, part of the topic." And here's what I'm gonna challenge you to do. I'm gonna challenge you to take what we say to each other and simply do it. Maybe even mostly, especially, the things you're kind of going, I don, I don, I just don't even know if I agree with that. It, it doesn't matter. Would you try it? Would you try it for the six weeks of the series?

Speaker 3: 04:21 Would you try it for six weeks after the series? So a total of 12 weeks? The truth is, look, your kids are so screwed up, twelve weeks isn't going to do any damage. OK, so if you would just try it, for the, the 12 w-. Here, here, here's why. Let, let, let me explain to you. Uh, what we're going to be talking about is critical, and if you pick and choose, you're gonna miss some critical parts. So don't let your lack of understanding or maybe just not being there yet be the thing that stops you. I had a moment in my life when I was a kid. My Dad gave me one of these, did you guys get one of these on the way in? All right. They call them Chinese handcuffs and uh, you know, what you do, you stick your fingers in and then they lock on your fingers.

Linn Winters: 04:59 I remember my dad handing it to me when I was about five and I, he, he said, "stick your fingers in," which I did and immediately realized I was stuck. And so I fought 'em for awhile and wrestled 'em for awhile. And finally in exasperation I turned to my d- and I said, "dad, how do I get my fingers out?" To which my dad said, "you ready? Push your fingers in." And I w- (laughing) "Dad. OK? Look, that's how I got in trouble in the first place. And uh, I, I, I -, you know, I'm not that stupid." And he said, "no, no, no. Linn, watch, you ready? You place your thumbs, you push your fingers in, and your fingers come out."

Linn Winters: 05:34 So the very thing that just seems like the wrong thing is actually the thing that brings, solution for you. And, all that again, to say there's gonna be moments. I just promise you that we're gonna say something you're gonna go, "that just feels like that sounds like the wrong thing," and I'm gonna ask you to push in. Do it for 12 weeks and just see what the result is.

Linn Winters: 05:54 If, if it, if it goes really, really bad, you can apologize to your kids later, OK? But do it for 12 weeks. All right, here's what we're gonna have. We're gonna have a conversation today that really just kind of sets the format for everything we're getting ready to do and it's, and it's a, it's a, it's a conversation about parenting style. Because right now in our culture there really are kind of two pervasive parenting styles. Uh, there's a, what we would call a child centered home. And then there's a parent centered home. And on first blush she would say, "well, Linn, does it really matter? I mean, isn't it really just a matter of preference? I mean, if some parents want to say, Hey, I'm just gonna kind of huddle my life around my child, and I'm gonna do everything I possibly can for my child, and, and, and that's just gonna be our focus until our child grows up."

Linn Winters: 06:42 Or, somebody says, "no, uh, I'm gonna, uh, not make my whole life revolve around my child. Matter of fact, I'm going to make my child actually, uh, get over some hurdles and accept some challenges in their life and I'm not going to do everything for him."

Linn Winters: 06:42 Isn't that just preference?

Linn Winters: 07:01 And the answer is, are you ready? No. No, because the style in which you parent is actually gonna place with them, a reference point that is gonna be with them the rest of their lives. And that reference point is either gonna diminish their life or it's going to serve them really, really well. And where you place that reference point is gonna change everything moving forward. So, what happens in a child-centered home, and guys, here's what you need to hear me say. I get how we get there. I get that precious, little Tommy, uh, shows up and he's just amazing. I mean, your child is remarkable compared to ours, and I get that. And, and you say, "hey, look, little Tommy has so many needs, and, uh, Tommy's just so precious, and so innocent. And so our goal, is to make Tommy's life wonderful. So we're gonna just concentrate all of our effort, all of our attention, to making Tommy safe, to making sure life is as fair as we can manage that for Tommy and we're gonna make sure that Tommy gets all the advantages that we never had." Parents or child-centered home?

Linn Winters: 08:18 Here's the dilemma. When you and I, uh, move into a child-centered mentality, guys and, again, I get that it comes from love. It's just not productive. You and I now begin to put a reference point in Tommy's life that says to Tommy, "Tommy, you are so won-, you are the center of the universe. Look how mom and dad huddle around you and meet your every need, uh, before you even spell Tommy. You're just so great." And Tommy grows up believing that the universe exists, for his happiness.

Linn Winters: 08:54 Now, think about that, that serves Tommy when he gets married. And now suddenly you have two people who were raised in child-centered homes who both believe that their marriage exists for their happiness alone. To which their saying, "Hey, why, why are you behavin-, why would ya, this is about me, this is about my needs being met and your job is to make me happy because that's what my parents did for me all my life. I'm the center of the universe."

Linn Winters: 09:27 Parent centered homes, because we worked so hard to make life fair and to alleviate and take care of all of our children's struggles and trials. We end up raising kids who don't know how to problem solve themselves because when that teacher was rude and got, loo, loo, loo, I get it. She was rude, uh, when she was unfair on the homework; I get it, I get it. I'm not arguing whether she was fair or not. Uh, what I'm arguing is you solved it, and little Tommy has never learned how to navigate his own problems. Because mommy and daddy solved every single problem for him. And guys, parenting is not about solving every problem. Parenting is about going through the problem with them, not for them, k?

Linn Winters: 10:12 Guys, this is, this is like doing your children's homework. Who gets the benefit? Not your child.

Linn Winters: 10:24 Child-centered homes, guys, as, as loving as they are, as well intentioned as they are, don't produce adults. They produce grown children; on the other end. So the other alternative, is for you and I just say, "Hey, I'm not gonna do that. I'm actually gonna have a parent centered home. Uh, this is not about making my child's life perfect. Uh, matter of fact, what this is all about is my child taking and making, not for as his own self as his reference point, but now I want my child to have every decision referenced through us. What is it my parents would want me to do in this (illegible)?" And you go, wh-, wh-, wait a minute. That sounds kind of equally selfish, right? You said it was selfish for the child to think the universe revolved around them. How is that different as a parent, for us to say, "Hey Tommy, your world is going to revolve around us."

Linn Winters: 11:18 Here's why that's different, because your role as a parent is to take and win little Tommy's heart. And we're going to talk about, in the next few moments, about three phases that children need to go through as they come to a point of just giving their hearts to their parents. But the intent, you ready for this? Is not to retain the heart. The intent is as a parent, once I receive the heart, to be able to now say, "OK, Tommy, you're 18 and you're getting ready to move out and we're not going to be there anymore, and so this heart now belongs to God. And as you go to navigate life with the same honor, with the same obedience, with the same concern for what we thought, you give that to God. You obey him the way you obeyed us. You care about what he thinks, the way you cared about what we thought. You honor him, the way you came to honor us as mom and dad."

Linn Winters: 12:16 And it's about the ability to transfer the hearts of our children to God when they leave our home, K? So let's talk about that, when it, talk about -. What are the three phases are children need to go through? And here's the part that's interesting, that you're going to want to watch. These same three phases are the three phases a Christian goes through in their relationship with God because we're God's children. And it'll be interesting as we go through it for you to watch and say, "hey, uh, how far have I made it? Am I still in phase one and I been a Christian for 10 years? Am I, am I at phase two, and I'm just stalled there in my Christian life?" Because your Christian walk will mirror, and parallel, the phases of our children.

Linn Winters: 12:58 K, here we go. Phase number one, grab your bibles and you're gonna go with me to Proverbs, Chapter One, starting in verse seven. If you're having a hard time finding this, it's real simple. Just kind of take your bible and open it almost dead smack in the middle. You're probably going to find the book of Psalms and then you go, right. If you find the book of Jobs, it's not what you thought, and still go right. OK? But you're gonna get to Proverbs. Here's the cool thing about Proverbs. Anybody know who wrote the book of Proverbs? Solomon. Solomon, the wisest man who ever walked the face of the earth is about to give you and I have some parenting instruction. OK? So it's, uh, Proverbs, Chapter One, starting in verse seven, and this is phase one, and probably, uh, just to give you context, this is what you oughta be.

Linn Winters: 13:47 You oughta be walking your child through phase one, probably from the time of birth, till about seven. That's when you're gonna focus on phase number one. Here it is, Proverbs, Chapter One, starting in verse seven. Here's what it says, "The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction." So let me say that again, because I, I, I, it sounds weird, right? You go, "wa-, wa-, wa-, wait, I'm supposed to fear God? I mean, that's, I thought God was loving. I thought God was kind." (illegible) He is. He is. But you realize he's your heavenly father? And when you and I disobey, one of the things that God says he does to the children he loves, is spank them. When they do the wrong thing, and it says, you ready for this? The fear of consequences, the fear that if I do that behavior, it turns out poorly Solomon says, "is the beginning of wisdom."

Linn Winters: 14:43 It's the very first instructional lesson that you and I should write on the hearts of our child. That good decisions, bring good consequences, and bad decisions result in bad consequences. And guys I'm just, -. I cannot tell you. You stop and watch. You have friends who just make bad decision, after bad decision, after bad decision. And, you know why they do that? Because they have never learned this lesson. And they never take the time to truly think through their decisions and go, "hey, a bad decisions probably gonna bring me a bad result." They actually believe, you ready for this? They actually believe that bad decisions can result in good things. And you know how they got there? They got there because they did not learn this lesson, K? So, I'm, I'm gonna talk about how we're going to do this. You and I, and here's how I'm going to challenge all of us that are parents in this room who have young children zero to about seven. That you're gonna leave this place today and you're gonna begin to focus on what I call, first time obedience.

Linn Winters: 15:45 K? First Time Obedience. Chances are a lot of us are struggling in this area and we're struggling with what I call threatening, repeating, behavior; as parents. So, let me, let me see if I can explain this. K, all of our children have done something wrong at some time. I know your child hasn't, but the rest of ours have, done something wrong at some time. K? So there's, there's the decision to be disobedient. There's the decision to do exactly what they were told not to; that, that's the, the wrong moment. And the wrong moment requires that something be done about it in response. Uh, there, there's gotta be some level of discipline. Whether, uh, that's a slap on the hand, whether that's timeout and look, look, look -. You can navigate this wherever you want. K? You, you you can, I, I, I don't care. K? All I'm telling you is, whatever the consequence is for a bad decision. This has to be bigger than this.

Linn Winters: 16:42 K? So that your child learns really, really quickly this is not worth the consequence. It just doesn't pay to do the wrong thing. K? So, however that works out for you. When you don't -. When your children are bad decisions and you don't respond with consequence, it immediately brings frustration. And the frustration will always rise to the level of the disobedience. So here's what happens with threatening, repeating parents. A little Tommy's three years old, and you're sitting there watching TV and you've got some milk in a glass and little Tommy reaches for the glass of milk. Now that's dangerous for Tommy to have something glass at three. And so you say to little Tommy, "Hey Tommy, no, you can't play with the glass." How many guesses do you want about what little Tommy's gonna do next?

Linn Winters: 17:35 He is reaching for the glass. And what you do in that moment is huge. And the problem is many of us in that moment choose to be threatening, repeating parents. And here's what I mean by that -. Rather than actually bringing a consequence to the moment, we simply threaten our children, "Hey, you do that, you're gonna be in trouble." But we don't ever follow through. And, when little Tommy reaches again, all we do is repeat ourselves, "Hey, you can't play with glass. That's not a good i-. Tommy stop it, Mommy told you so."
Linn Winters: 18:24 Or how about this one? "I'm gonna count to three." You, (illegible) man, guys. Please, please, please, please, if you don't learn anything else from this sermon, don't ever count with your kids ag-. Don't do it. Guess, guess when your kid's gonna obey? At 3.5, that's when he is gonna obey. I'm just telling you, you gave him one, two, and three for nothing. It's just, it's, he uh, (illegible) it'll always be disobedience.

Linn Winters: 18:46 K? And here's the deal. When Tommy disobeys again, nothing is done except for threatening and repeating. Then immediately frustration, r-, in your life rises to equal it. And Tommy's gonna test you the rest the day. Tommy is going to come back and he's going to wait til you're not looking. He's gonna put his hands on it. He's gonna. He's gonna. Take it and run out of the room and you're gonna be wrestling Tommy to the ground, and as Tommy's doing it, your gonna, what have I, God, I've got a child from the devil. He just, he just doesn't listen, right? And your frustration level will always rise to the equality of the level of disobedience. K? Tommy's gonna inherit, watch this -. Here's, here's why this is dangerous. Because you're teaching Tommy to be a gambler. Because here's what Tommy says, "I've done it five times and I still haven't had a consequence. This is cool. I can do bad things, disobedient things, and nothing happens."

Linn Winters: 19:48 But here's what you and I know. Our frustration level rises, and then Tommy finally does that, whatever that is, whatever the last time is -. And in that moment, the magic box comes out and, and you go, "well Linn, which, what's the magic bo-?" I don't know what the magic box is. The magic box is that last box, it's the last straw, it's that moment you just go, "I'm done. I'm done." And depending if you were tired that day, the magic box comes a little quicker. Depending on if you're feeling guilty about being a lousy parent then sometimes the magic box comes later. But eventually the magic box comes. It's the last box. And in that moment you finally decide to discipline. Here's the problem. Guess how we discipline when we've been threatening and repeating up until then? (sound effects)

Linn Winters: 20:55 Right? Our, our veins are popping, our eyeballs are bulging out of our head, we're blowing snot bubbles. (sound effects) Right? And, l, l, l, Let's just be honest, we have never disciplined well in this model. We have, we have -. This, This is our worst parenting moment. This, This is the moment that brings you in me to the great and we go, "Oh man, I, I ha-. I, I had so much anger, so much ire in my -. I mean I should. The things I said to my child about being illegitimate, I shouldn't have said, you know, it's just all that stuff." Right?

Linn Winters: 21:01 It, it, this is our worst parenting. Now here's the thing that's confusing for Tommy. In Tommy's mind, all he did was this -. Because remember the first five were freebies. You didn't do anything for the first five and in his mind he did 'this' and it is absolutely confusing. "Why am I getting this for this when the first five were free?" But here's what's even more dangerous. Tommy doesn't leave saying, "boy, I better new do that again." Tommy leaves, that moment saying, "I have to watch mommy or daddy's frustration level. Because the truth is I can get away with anything as long as they never put the last box on."

Linn Winters: 22:03 Which means you've taught your children to gamble with disobedience. And think about how that plays out in their life? How many times can I break the law? How many times can I cheat the IRS? How many times can I maybe flirt with my secretary and it doesn't ma-? I c-, see I can do the wrong thing as long as I just don't get the last box on. And guys, I'm just telling you, it's a horrible lesson to our children when you and I are threatening, repeating parents. So, you and I are going to ask our children for first time, for first time obedience. Which looks like this.
Linn Winters: 22:41 When your child does the offense, when they do the thing that they go for the glass and they shouldn't go for the glass, you're going to say, "hey, whoa, whoa, whoa. Tommy, we don't play with glass. Matter of fact, if you take, grab, the glass again. I'm gonna swat your hand or (illegeible) I'm gonna put you in tim-." I don't care, whatever that is, remember the consequence just has to be bigger than the joy of doing it. Right? And then guess what Tommy's going to do because Tommy's Tommy. He's gonna grab the glass again and immediately you follow through. You say, "OK." But think about this. Look at your frustration level in that moment. So you're not going crazy and the, the discipline doesn't end up inappropriate, or weird. Matter of fact, you ready for this? Your best parenting happens when you respond immediately to disobedience. Because you're completely in control and you're sane in that moment.

Linn Winters: 23:33 Some of you are in the room, right now and your going, "if I did that, my kid, my kid would freak out. My kid'd have convulsions. They wouldn't know what to do if they actually got disciplined for doing something wrong the first time." And, guys, I'm just gettin' a lil, lil (ineligible). If you do this, if you begin to, if you go home to do this, and you've been threatening, repeating til now. You're gonna have three weeks of heck. I'm just telling you, cause little Tommy doesn't understand this and you're gonna start to get worn out. And I'm just gonna say to you, "no, no, no. Remember what you said 12 weeks, don't give in." Because right about the third week, little Tommy's gonna have a little bulb that goes on in his head and goes, "wow, doing the wrong thing. I get in trouble every time." Which guys is the lesson, you ready? Because what you and I want our children to learn in this first phase: I always get caught.

Linn Winters: 24:23 You want your kid leaving your home someday believing every time I do something, I'm just the guy who gets caught, every time. You don't want 'em bein' the gambler and says, "I can disobey, disobey, disobey, disobey and I get away." No, I'm, you want your kid believin' if they jay walked and the little old lady was getting mugged down the street, the cop would stop them. That's what you want 'em believing. "I don't know how to get caught every time. It's not worth it." K? And you and I get, it's an incredibly powerful lesson. Now let's parallel this a minute. Some of us in our Christian life, this is why we serve God. We, we say to God, "Hey God, I, I, I, I guess I'm, you know, I'm not gonna date that person or may, may, you know maybe I'm not gonna watch that show, or whatever it is, because I'm afraid of the consequence."

Linn Winters: 25:09 And Solomon will say to you, "hey, that's OK that, that's a, that's a good start for your Christian walk. Because the beginning of wisdom is the fear of discipline." It's OK, but here's what you need to hear me say. If that's where your walk stays, you realize that's an adolescent walk. If the only reason you follow Jesus or obey the commands of scripture is because you're afraid he'd spank you if you didn't. Your relationship with God is the relationship of a four year old; with a parent. K? It's beginning stuff.

Linn Winters: 25:41 All right? Phase number two. Here we go. Second phase. Uh, this phase should probably be around the time your child is about eight to the time they're thirteen. K? And let's go, it's in Genesis, Chapter 39. This is going to be super simple. Genesis is at the front of your Bible. Genesis, Chapter 39.

Linn Winters: 26:05 OK, let, let me give you a little bit of set up in the moment so it'll, it'll make a little more sense. It's Joseph. And if you know the story of Joseph, he gets dragged away from his family. So think about this for a second, he doesn't have any parental supervision right now. And he's gonna make a critical life decision. And what happens is he's working as a slave in Potiphar's house. Potiphar's wife decides to seduce him. Everybody's gone. No one will know, and she decides to seduce him. Watch the reason Joseph gives for why he won't do it, and it's not because he's afraid of a spanking. He's moved to the second phase. K? Here we go. It's Genesis, Chapter 39, starting in verse 8. K? "But he, Joseph refused. He said to Potiphar's wife with me in charge, he told her, my master does not concern himself with anything in the house. Everything he owns, he has entrusted to my care. No one is greater in this house than I am. My master has withheld nothing from me except you, because Oh, by the way, you're his wife." So think about what Joseph response is, he says, "look, look. I mean I could do this and maybe no one'd ever even know, but I can't because your husband has trusted me. And if he were to ever find out, if he were to ever discover I, I could not bear the look on his eyes. I could, I could not deal with the disappointment for a man who has given me so much opportunity, giving me so much freedom, and that I would do that to him. I would never do that to his heart."

Linn Winters: 27:48 isn't that remarkable? And then he actually goes on and he says, um, "and how could I do such a wicked thing and sin against my God?" And here's what you need to catch on the story. Joseph's response doesn't come because he's afraid he'll get a spanking if he does it. He's afraid he'll disappoint if he does it. And the second phase for your child, as you begin to win their heart, as you begin to move them towards you, is now to begin to say, "Hey, I want you to think about what it does to my heart when you do that and I want you to start using as a reference point in your life, not the idea that I'm going to spank you or get you know, ground you for, I want you to begin to ask, what am I dad going to think? What's my mom going to think? If I do that."

Linn Winters: 28:34 And you and I are going to begin, you ready? To give them the ability to make decisions with limits, with limits. So you might say, "Hey, I'm going to let you decide what type of movies you're going to, but only PG- 13. K? But I'm gonna let you decide." K? Now look, look, look. Some of you are going, "oh shi-. My kids would make so many stupid decisions if I totally. I mean they would just woo!" That's the point because, you ready for this? Your kids are going to make stupid decisions. The only question remaining is, do they do it while they're still at home with you and you have the chance to coach them? Or do they do it when they're 18 and head off to college? And I'm just telling you, you want them to navigate stupid decisions while they're at home and you have the opportunity to download. So you're gonna give them the ability to make a deci-, you got to decide what that is, and then you're gonna follow those decisions with review. You're gona say, "hey, now that you made that d-, can I just? And here's the review. Can I tell you what that does to my heart when you make that decision?" It can be either good or bad. You can say, "man, I was so proud of you when you made that decision or you're saying You know what? I'm just telling you, man it. It breaks my heart when you do that."
Linn Winters: 29:47 So here's an example, Josh came to us, I think he was about 13 at the time, and he had a friend who was having a party and part of the party was that they were going to go to a movie. And it was a movie that you, you, you can tell in the pre- I mean just crude, right? Just crude. And Josh said, "hey, we're all going to the movie. All the parents said it was OK." And uh, I said, "Josh, man I, I, I don't want you goin' to that movie. That's just not the right type of movie for us." He goes, "Oh, dad. ya know, ya know" And I went, "all right, all right, all right, here's, what i'll do, you decide from now on, starting today, you get to decide what movie you're going to. As long as it's PG, 13 or less, right? You have no right to decide R, but PG-13 or less, I'll let you decide."

Linn Winters: 30:22 Uh, He went to the movie, surprised? He went to the movie, he's a 13 year old boy and he came back from the movie and I said, "Josh, hey what was the movie?" "Oh, it was so cool. It was the best movie. You have ever." And I go, "wow. You know, I'm a little surprised because I saw the pre-. I, I, it looked to me like there was going to be a lot of language." He goes, "oh yeah, yeah. Was a lot of language." And then. And then, "Josh, I heard there was some nudity in that movie." He goes, "ahhh, it was just for a second, was just for a second. It'll be ok" And I, and I went, "Jo- yeah, ya know, I, I'm just wondering, Josh, how you would've felt about the movie if I had been there with you? And I, I wonder how you would have been about the movie if Jesus had been there with you. And, and look, here's the deal. You get, you still get to decide mov-. You get to do that. I'm not taking that away. I'm not punishing you. That was your decision. I gave ya that decision. But I just need you, I just need you to know that when you decide that way, that just makes my heart sad. I, I, I wish you'd make better decisions about that."

Linn Winters: 31:24 Uh, I'd like to tell you, that was the last time he went to a bad movie. Uh, he didn't, he, he had a whole (illegible) string and he would go to movies and then he'd come home and I'd go, "Hey Josh, how was, the mo-?" "Ohhh, it was really, really good." And I'd say, "well, should I go to it?" And he'd go, "noooo, you probably wouldn't like it." And, and I just, you know, I'd have that conversation every once in a while I'd just say, "you know, Josh, I, I really wish you'd be more selective. An, ya know, I, I, I ju-, my heart. Just gets sad when I, ya know, I know you're making those types of choices in your life." And what we're doing, guys you ready for this? What you're doing in that moment is you're giving your child the freedom to make decisions with review.

Linn Winters: 32:02 Can I tell you? And here's what I love. Uh, my son chooses just movies very carefully now, but he learned how to do that with freedom given. So you may say, "hey, you know what, uh, you can decide what, you know, what day you're gonna clean your room on. You know, I wish you'd clean it every day, but you can decide and as long as it's clean by Friday, I guess that you can just be a pig the rest of the week and clean it. I don't care, but you just need to know I'm inviting the neighbors home, over, for a two or on Saturday." So you know, whatever, you know, whatever that is, but you understand that what you're giving freedom, with review, because what you're training your child to do. When I make that decision, I know I have to run it through my parents heart. Cause somewhere my parents are going to review that with me from their heart. K?

Linn Winters: 32:45 And here's the other powerful part of it. When your kid comes back and says, "Hey, I want, I want curfew to get later." You have every right now to say, "you know, you're still struggling with the movie thing and until I can have confidence with you that you're making good decisions there. I can't in good conscience, as a parent, give you another privilege, give you another honor in your life." And here's what children, loo-, are you ready for this? Good decisions lead to more trust.

Linn Winters: 33:16 It's a way of winning in their heart, and getting them just a little closer to you and me.

Linn Winters: 33:20 All right, here we go. Last one real quick. K, phase number three and guys, (illegible). Let me just share this. If you can get a kid to phase number three, you win. K? If you get them to number three, man it's a home run as a parent. K? Because what we're gonna do is we're gonna ask our child to now make decisions out of honor. K? So real quickly, grab your bibles, go with me to Second Samuel. Again, go to the front of your Bible, work to the right. It's Second Samuel, Chapter 24. Let, let me set this up real quick. This is a really, really intriguing moment because this is the end of the life of King David and the author, God, decides to use this story as the crowning achievement of his life. Which is really, really weird because David slew Goliath, David slew a whole bunch of Philistines, David built this massive city. He was an incredible king, and yet this moment is the moment in which God chooses to summarize the life of David, and here's what, you ready for this? It actually comes on the backside of sin.

Linn Winters: 34:26 But it's what David did next that's so honorable, and here's what happens. David is sinned, and so God says, "Hey David, I need you to go buy this piece of land. You're gonna build an altar there and you're going to ask for my forgiveness." So David goes to the owner of the land, a guy by the name of Aroona and says, "Hey, uh, God's commanded me to build this alter. I'm gonna ask God for forgiveness for my sin." And Aroona turns to David and says, "take the ledgers. I'll just give you the land and I'll give you my oxen so that you can sacrifice my oxen on the altar and I'll even give you the plow sheer things that they pull. You can use that for the wood, for the burnt sacrifice. I mean, just take it David you're my King, take it."

Linn Winters: 35:15 And David's response is, "not a chance." Isn't that interesting? Not a chance. Think about this, he could have fulfilled the requirements of God and it wouldn't have cost them anything because the guy was giving it to him for free. But here's David's response, it's Second Samuel, Chapter 24, verse 24, "but the King David replied to Aroona. No, I insist on paying you for it. I will not sacrifice to the Lord my God burnt offerings that cost me nothing." Why? Because God would not know honor in that moment. He'd simply know obedience. And I'm choosing in this moment to show honor.

Linn Winters: 35:49 And guys, I'm just telling you, if you can get your kids to the place where they show honor, not just obedience, you have won their heart. So here's, here's how you get there. You begin to speak to your children, your deepest hopes for their future. Uh, it's stuff like this, "Hey, I'm hoping when you get to college, I'm hoping you'll be different than the rest of the kids. I'm hoping you're not gonna screw your life up goin' to crazy parties and sleeping with every-'. I, I'm just hoping you're different when you get to college. Hey, I'm hoping when you pick a spouse, see, I'm not gonna spank you, why would I spank you over your spouse? What am I gonna do-. I'm not gonna be there to pick her with you or pick him with you, but let me tell you what would be so honorable and what my hope is. I'm hoping you'll pick a Christian, young man, a Christian who loves Jesus with all their heart and loves you as much because that would be honor if you did that."

Linn Winters: 36:43 "I'm hoping when you're a parent, I'm hoping you're a better parent than me. Because I'd be so thrilled to watch you grand parent my grandkids better than I was a parent to you." You're speaking honor and what it would look like. When we use to drop Josh off at school. I'd say to Josh, "Hey, Josh, as you get ready to go to school today, remember who you are." Now. The first time I did that, wh Josh looked back at me and said, "I know, I'm a pastor's son." That's. "No, no, no, no, no - no, no, no, no. Josh has nothing to do with it. You're a Winters and Winters, honor God, so I'm gonna ask you, as you go on that campus, I'm not going to be there with you to see it. I, I may never know what you do or don't do, but I'm gonna ask you out of my eyesight, to live with honor today."

Linn Winters: 37:37 It's interesting. Uh, my son, (illegible) my son called me up the other day and, uh, his car had broken down. So picture this, he's, he's got a car sitting in his driveway that's worthless, right? It's just completely broken down. So he saved a little bit of money and he calls me and says, "Dad, would you go with me? I want to go look at a car." And I said, "sure." And we went over to someone who's a friend, of a friend, of a friend, who happened to be a Christian. And so the thought was, "hey, they're, at least they're going to be honest with us about the car." And so we got in. Sure enough, this guy was just great. I mean, he showed us every repair bill that he'd ever had and just said, "here's, you know, here's a couple of things that are broken," ya know, and sold Josh the car. Four days later the transmission goes out and the transmission cost more than the car's worth. So a couple of Josh's friends say to him, "Hey Josh, just call the guy back up. He was a Christian. I know he'll feel guilty about selling you a car that broke down in four days. I bet he'll give you some of the money back."

Linn Winters: 38:37 Josh called me up and he said, "dad, I think their right. I think he probably. But i, it feels weird to me. I mean, I, I don't think he tried to jip me. I think. I think he was as honest as he could be. I think he sold me the car in good conscience. I don't think it's right to guilt him out into giving me part of the money back. I think it's just unfortunate. It is what it is." And I said, "Josh, what do you think the honorable thing to do would be?" And Josh said, "I think just to live with the lump. I think to just say, hey, he did what was honorable when he sold me the car, I ended up, unfortunately the car that doesn't run."

Linn Winters: 39:13 Can I tell you that I love the moment because Josh, Josh didn't have to call me, right? He's long moved out. I wasn't gonna spank him over the car. Right? I mean, you, you realize what he was calling me for? He was saying, Dad, I want to live this moment with honor. Would you help me understand what honor looks like? And guys, when you get that, you've got the heart of your child.

Linn Winters: 39:43 Which, yeah, which then you're ready for this, guys?

Linn Winters: 39:47 Gives you and me the opportunity of 18 when they move out to say, "now that you'll be out from under my site. Give God the obedience you gave me. First Time Obedience. Give God's heart the reference for what you do. Think, how's God gonna feel if I do this, but more than that, give God that which honors him." It's, it, guys, why do people serve in the ch-, (illegible)? They don't serve in the church because the pastor is gonna spank you. You serve in the church because it honors God. Why do you tithe? You don't tithe because we're gonna come visit your home and now you tithe because it honors God and I'm just telling you. It's called maturity in a child. It's called maturity in a Christian. When my decisions become honor decisions. It's a big deal.

Linn Winters: 40:39 So here's my challenge. Here we go. If you've got a young child, somewhere between zero and seven, you're going to spend the next few weeks. First Time Obedience. They did it. You're going to respond. They did it. You're going to respond and about the time, uh, you just got to win the wear out war, right? You're gonna wear them out before they wear you out, zero to seven.

Linn Winters: 40:56 If you've got a little bit older child, eight to thirteen, you're going to begin to give them decision making with review. "Hey, I'm not going to spank you over that. I'm not gonna discipline you over that, but I am gonna review that. I'm gonna tell you what that decision does to my heart and greater, ready? Greater decisions respond in greater trust."

Linn Winters: 41:17 And then finally, for our older kids, 14, 15, 16, start speaking on, or "hey, when you get to college, this is what I'm hopin', when you get married I hope." And began to speak honor for your kids, let's bow our heads and say, Dear Lord Jesus, this is, this is mission critical. This is, this is a big deal, and God we're just praying, help us to do it well. We, we get it. None of us is gonna be perfect parents, but God, if, if we could move our kids in the direction of giving their hearts to us, so that we would have the privilege of giving their hearts to you. God, that would be a home run. And so God, we're just asking, help us, help us, help us to lead our homes well. And this we pray in Jesus name. Amen.

Recorded in Chandler, Arizona.
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Cornerstone Church
1595 S Alma School Road
Chandler, Arizona 85286