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Behavior Bucks

Snaggletooth Alex

The Mouth

I have a smart kid.  He’s one of those kids I would totally brag about if we were talking about school…yah, I’m that guy.  But his smart is found in more than his books.  He has a smart mouth.  He’s never wrong, a great arguer, and knows how to make you feel bad.  Not great qualities for a 6 year old.  Don’t get me wrong, he’s a terrific kid, and I love him to the depths, but there are some things to work on…it’s my job, right: raising him the way he should go.

So, enter Behavior Bucks.  We started it yesterday.  Basically it’s this: do the behavior we want to encourage, you get a behavior buck.  Break one of the family rules (we’ve narrowed them down to four over-arching rules: Respect, Obedience, Honesty, Apologize/Forgive) you owe us a behavior buck.  You can save bucks to get stuff you want (date with a parent, toy, candy, playdate, etc.).

Parenting is hard.  I don’t know what I’m doing half the time, and end up making a lot of mistakes, but when I’m overwhelmed I remember a promise God gave me on a retreat recently with some other pastors:

I had shared with these pastors some of the struggles I’ve had with my son, Alex.  Then, in a dream (which doesn’t happen often) I had a vision of Alex’s smiling face and then a feeling or words came to me that said, “Don’t worry.  I’ve got him.”   Simple, but so comforting.  I know that my son has a home with the Father.  I know that he’s under my care, but that God can work through my feeble and sometimes poor parenting.

I know that Alex will grow into the man I pray for.  Already I see him as a gentle and caring person who knows how to be the presence of Christ in the world.

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