Raising Great Kids

Of Crayon Choices and Parenting Methods

Of Crayon Choices and Parenting Methods: a cautionary tale of screwy doctrines, parenting experts, and gullible parents

Yesterday, I posted a bit about getting too carried away in parenting methods and teachers, rather than simply obeying God, seeking His will.

I wanted to clarify that I am not against getting wisdom from others. It’s a great idea to get insights from those with more experience in an area.

The Bible reinforces this, in fact.

Paul teaches in Titus that the younger women are to be guided by the older, more experienced women in the church in Titus 2:4-5. I was just cautioning against getting too wrapped up in personalities and in methods that we lose the focus, what is and is not important.

Looking for Answers

Of Crayon Choices and Parenting Methods: a cautionary tale of screwy doctrines, parenting experts, and gullible parents

When I was a very new mom, I think the biggest struggle for me was that I had no frame of reference for parenting, or at least that is how I felt at the time. I was eager to learn, to search for answers, and I wanted someone to tell me what to do.

I think all of us have those insecurities, don’t we?

Especially as a new mom, with a new baby or toddler (or both), and feeling this weight of responsibility for these precious souls.

It’s really overwhelming at times!

I started to take a class at a church nearby. We lived in the city at the time, so there was a church every quarter mile, and thus there were plenty of options and opportunities. A mom at the park suggested to me that I try out her class at her church for parents to learn all about how to raise my children “God’s way”.

At first, I was really overwhelmed again by what I was learning, and feeling like I had not laid a very good foundation with my then 18-month-old daughter (and newborn son), but the longer I was in the class, the more concerned I became with what was being taught very dogmatically, with little Bible support.

I found that the class especially made me feel like every life event was a major battle in the war for my child’s soul. All of these lessons made me tense and frustrated in so many ways, and I was losing the joy of the Lord, as well as the joy of parenting my children.

A Little Leaven

There were some great principles in the class, to be sure. The stuff that was Bible-based was awesome, and it prompted me to further study of the Word.

However, the creator of this program went off on some strange tangents that everyone just assumed must be in the Bible…somewhere…because after all, this guy was teaching from the Bible, right? Some of his teachings were presented to make it sound spiritual but it is actually very deceptive and flat out wrong.

Who Knew Crayons Could Be So Controversial?

One example that stands out in my mind involved crayons.

When I was in the class, we got to a part where they discussed even children picking out what color crayon they want to use is akin to the parents feeding the child’s sin nature, because we are letting the child be self-important and letting the child have too much control.

Pretty absurd, I know.

Anyway…we got into a debate–me against the rest of the class….I guess I am too much of a thinker of my own thoughts for that sort of horsey doo doo.

My then-18-month-old, now 21-year-old thinks for herself. This started at age 18 months and grabbing her own crayons all the way to adulthood and standing up for what is right to her peers, and doing the right thing when I am not there to tell her what crayon to use so to speak.

I remind her and her siblings constantly that only dead fish go with the flow.

NO ONE will succeed in this world for JESUS if they need mom and dad to make every decision for them…and that letting go process starts with such small things as choosing the color of crayon to color with.

NO ONE will succeed in this world for JESUS if they need mom and dad to make every decision for them Click To Tweet

And yet…I had a classroom of 20 young couples who were now “chastening the sin out of their kids” for choosing their own crayons. I wonder what sort of 21-year-olds they have now? A sad thought.

(ED: updated to change ages and other minor edits)