Child training is about more than just spanking. It is about
training for correct behavior. Pr 29:17 states, "Correct thy
son, and he shall give thee rest; yea, he shall give delight unto
thy soul." While the rod is and should be used to correct
discipline problems it may also be used to teach correct behavior.
Infants cry because they are either hungry, tired, soiled or need to
be burped. After a while they will begin to cry because they
want to be held or don't want to be set down on the floor. A
young mother can either wear her self out carrying this spoiled
infant all the time or she can train him not to fuss. To start
with, softly but firmly say, "No, don't cry", or "No, don't fuss.
When he continues, a thump of the finger on his thigh and again
softly but firmly saying "No" is usually enough to make him stop and
consider what has just happened. If he cries again he receives
another thump and a "No". Each time he cries he always
receives the same response. He is not old enough to reason
what is happening but he is able to realize that his crying has
become a source of pain and if he stops the pain stops. He also
learns to respond to your voice and realize that "No" means stop.
Another example is when he is old enough to begin reaching for
your food at the dinner table. You can either contort yourself
and hold him far enough away that he can't reach or train him not to
do it. When he grabs the plate of food softly but firmly say,
"No" and remove his hand. The next time he grabs the plate of
food give him a thump on the back of the hand when he reaches for
the plate and again say "No". It's amusing to watch him draw
his hand back and think for a moment and then inevitably he reaches
for the plate again and immediately receives another thump and a
"No". Drawing back his hand once more he may grow more wary
and try to sneak up on the plate but as soon as he does another
thump and a "No", teaches him he cannot get away with it. If
this is done consistently from the very beginning within only a few
lessons he has learned a new boundary and no longer reaches for the
However, as a child grows older the thump quickly looses it's
effect. You will soon find that it is time to move on to the
rod. This is for his training. Also, you may find that a
child who is already used to being picked up every time he cries or
is accustomed to grabbing your dinner plate probably won't respond
to the finger thump. By this time they are too old and too set
in their ways to respond to it.
Training with the rod is the same as with the finger thump only
now we move to his posterior. God made his buttocks so that it
will absorb the pain of the rod without leaving marks. If he
is wearing a thick diaper it may be necessary to use it on the
inside or rear of his thighs. All we are doing is inflicting
enough of a sting to gain his attention.
When he is set down and begins to cry, softly but firmly say, "
No, stop crying," or "No, stop fussing." When he continues,
one lick with the switch and a "No, stop crying" begins this new
phase of his training. At this point if he continues to cry,
each time give him a lick of the switch and a "No, stop crying or
stop fussing" and you will teach him he cannot get away with it.
It is important that you are absolutely consistent and don't give
up. Because if you give in and pick him up, you have just
trained him that if he fusses long enough you will cave in and give
him what he wants.
This same scenario may be repeated any number of ways. When
you lay him down to sleep or tell him not to touch. If he
refuses to lay down, lay him back down and say, "Lay down" if he
refuses a lick with the switch and softly but firmly saying "Lay
down" will train him he must obey. Likewise when he reaches
for things he must not touch. If he insists on grabbing it you
can either "Child Proof Your House" or "House Proof Your Child".
I recommend the latter because everywhere you go there will be
things we wants to get into and he must learn there are some things
he must not touch. When he reaches for the forbidden item say,
"No, don't touch". When he reaches again say "No, don't touch"
and give him a lick with the switch. If you are absolutely
consistent, within a short period of time he will be trained to the
sound of your voice you will only to say "No, don't touch" and he
will leave it alone. As with any child and any scenario, they
will all need periodic reinforcement with the switch to remind them
to obey but you will have succeeded in training them to mind your
commands and as the scripture says, "he shall give thee rest; yea,
he shall give delight unto thy soul."
Be warned, however, the longer you spoil a child by giving him
his every wish the longer it will take to break him of the bad
habits that you have allowed him to develop. But his habits
can be broken. You have to be more determined to break his
habits than he is determined to keep them. Considering how
determined a child can be you understand the magnitude of the
determination a parent must have to correct a child's behavior and
train him in the way he should go.