Apply your heart to discipline and your ears to knowledge.
Spring had arrived with showers, birds singing, flowers with soft colors opening in their beds, on trees and bushes and then blue skies. Everywhere you looked things were greening up. Growing. Freshness was in the air. One of Mary Rose’s most favorite things in spring was kite flying. At the end of the month her Bible class was going to have a kite flying /devotional day. As her and Mama were in the store she thought she spied the best kite of all! She knew she just “had” to have it because it was a kite in the shape of a butterfly. She “loved” butterflies! “Can I get it?” Mary Rose asked with persistence in her voice. Mama answered and said, “I’m sorry; but today we came into the store to only get the groceries needed for our meals. And too this is the week we are fixing a couple of extra meals for the family who had a new baby. You will have to wait until next week to get it.” Mary Rose became a bit demanding with some agitation in her movement and said, “But Mama, what if it’s not there next week? There are only 2 left!” “If that happens then you will just have to choose a different one.” Mama said. Mary Rose could hardly bear the thought of not having that particular kite. She wasn’t happy about leaving the kite behind but she had no choice. Disappointed she slumped out to the car and let her body fall into the seat. Her mother reminded her about her attitude and said that having any kite is better than none at all. Mary Rose thought about it; but still wasn’t giving up. The week past and her family again went to the store and this time a kite was on the list! She rushed over to where the kites hung and looked through them but no butterfly kites. The worker there said she had sold the last one that morning to a young girl. Mary Rose crossed her arms with a pout. She became angry and said, “I told you it would be gone!” She stomped her foot and tears began to flow. She wore a sour expression as Daddy escorted her out to the car. Mama got the rest of the things on the list and then joined them. When Mary Rose calmed down she asked if they could go to a different store to check for the kite. Daddy said, “No, you should have thought about that before you became angry and talked back.” She couldn’t have even chosen a different kite now if she wanted to. Her chance was spoiled. She thought, “Oh no; how will I get “my” kite now? Mary Rose regretted not getting “her” kite, but not so much her behavior. When they got home it was time for Mary Rose to visit the thinking chair. It was behind a divider with a small table on which a Bible, pencil and paper sat. On the wall was a bulletin board with a calming picture and several written Bible verses from when someone had sat there before. Sometimes her parents even took a turn sitting in the thinking chair when they needed time to just think or pray. While Mary Rose was there her Daddy came and looked up a Bible verse, had her read it and then they talked about the meaning. She had to write it out 25 times. James 1:19-20 Mary Rose didn’t like having to do this and also disliked what the verse said for it reminded her of how she had acted. But then as she wrote, the words began to sink in. Her heart began to change and she soon realized that she not only had a bad attitude and acted out toward her parents, but also toward God. She should have been thankful to have any kite instead of being filled with anger. She had spoiled her chance. Not anyone else. Just her. When Mary Rose brought the paper to her parents she had quite a different look on her face. She said, “I’m sorry for becoming angry at you about not getting that kite and for acting the way I did. I didn’t even appreciate being able to pick out a different kite.” They were happy to see her attitude had changed. Her parents hugged her and said how glad they were that she had changed her thinking. They also told her she was forgiven. Mary Rose posted the Bible verse on the board by the thinking chair so they could all be reminded that anger does not bring about God’s goodness. At the end of the month Mary Rose was getting ready to go to the kite flying/devotional day. About an hour before it was time to leave Mary Rose sat holding last year’s kite. It was bright and pretty with lots of stripes and she was really looking forward to flying it again. Mama and Daddy looked at each other and exchanged a look of contentment and thankfulness. Mary Rose had managed to keep a good attitude for the rest of the month even though she had not gotten the butterfly kite. As time ticked by Daddy went out to the garage. He came through the back door and called out for Mary Rose and she quickly came to see what he wanted. He said, “We are very proud of you Mary Rose, for keeping a good attitude and remembering how God wants you to behave.” They smiled at her and he said, “Close your eyes and hold out your hands.” She did just that and when she opened her eyes, to her surprise she was holding the butterfly kite! She hugged her parents and thanked them over and over. She had learned her lesson well and her parents decided to reward her.When she arrived to fly her kite she noticed that another girl in her class had the same kite as her. She told Mary Rose she had bought the last one at the beginning of the month and a smile formed across the face of Mary Rose. The next morning in Bible class the teacher had posted some new verses on the wall. They were decorative but also had to do with the kind of behavior their teacher expected to see within the classroom. Luke 6:31; Philippians 2:3-4; 1 Thessalonians 5:15; Philippians 2:14; Romans 12:18. Mary Rose noticed one of the verses was James 1:19-20 the same one her parents had given her to learn from. That was one Bible verse she thought she would for sure remember.
To my Sister Bible class teachers,
Mary Rose learned a hard lesson this month. Her parents opened God’s amazing Word to her as a method of discipline and it had a way of working on her heart.
As Mary Rose wrote out the verses she applied the Word of God. She understood what she needed to change and did. She was reminded at home as well as in Bible class of what God expects. Discipline is one thing that should bring about action and not reaction form a parent or teacher. I do like using scripture as Bible class rules. It’s not just our say so but God’s Say! If we have a plan of action ahead of time it helps. I believe we should first let our students know what is expected of them and then give positive reinforcement as they do well! Choose your battles! I don’t pick on everything but I do like my students to sit up, pay attention, and participate. It does help to avoid trouble if we keep the class flowing with different methods of learning, but should trouble arise, Give them warning and follow through if needed. Some of my ideas for class room discipline are as follows – Try giving them something to do or help with; a verse to write out that will help them; don’t be afraid to move your students (If I think they need to be moved I don’t always give a warning first); take them to their parents (usually as a last resort); sit them in the hall with the door open (this works best with a hall monitor); talk with the parents. The thinking chair? I think it would be more effective in a home setting. Please don’t misunderstand, I love my students! We are there to learn about God and enjoy each other’s company along the way..
This month’s featured visual aids are the decorative Bible Verse Class Rules to print at the link below.
My prayers and encouragement go with you.
Serving in Christ,
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