Parents have questions… Practical questions like: How and when should I discipline my child? How do I get them potty trained? And spiritual questions like: When is my child old enough to confess faith in Christ? What about baptism and the Lord’s Supper? How can I be sure that they are saved? In answering these questions, we have God’s Word as our guide, but we must also take into account the child’s level of maturity. Have you noticed that every child is unique? No two are the same. And as they grow, they change. So the parenting style that seemed effective when they were small, doesn’t work when they’re older. These differences need different parenting styles.
In his first letter to the Thessalonians, the apostle Paul told them that he had been willing to parent according to their situation, sometimes gentle and affectionate like a mother and sometimes strong like a father in order to release them to live up to God’s calling. We can parent our children following God’s Word to match our child’s situation with a goal of releasing them to the Lord.