Proverbs 19:15-24 Sluggards and Discipline

Laziness brings on deep sleep,
    and the shiftless go hungry.

16 Whoever keeps commandments keeps their life,
    but whoever shows contempt for their ways will die.

17 Whoever is kind to the poor lends to the Lord,
    and he will reward them for what they have done.

18 Discipline your children, for in that there is hope;
    do not be a willing party to their death.

19 A hot-tempered person must pay the penalty;
    rescue them, and you will have to do it again.

20 Listen to advice and accept discipline,
    and at the end you will be counted among the wise.

21 Many are the plans in a person’s heart,
    but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails.

22 What a person desires is unfailing love[b];
    better to be poor than a liar.

23 The fear of the Lord leads to life;
    then one rests content, untouched by trouble.

24 A sluggard buries his hand in the dish;
    he will not even bring it back to his mouth!

Sluggards and Discipline

The Protestant Work Ethic, for which America has been well known, is caught from parents while their children are in school. “In the European Journal of Social Psychology in August 2009 that showed it takes 66 days to form a habit. Given the results of that study, it’s no wonder developing good work habits is a daunting challenge for parents – and students. (Wholestudent.com)”  So a sluggard is usually the result of a parent who can not develop a consistent habit with their child.  I think that many parents are working hard and so they find it hard to develop a positive attitude toward laying down a disciplined approach to study and housework.  Some fathers and mothers do not know how to study well themselves and some parents do not know how to keep a home running.  It would be good for such parents to seek advice.  Some, deep down, just can’t be bothered.  If we want our children to work in the ways that God has designed them to, we have to instil good study habits in them while they are in school.

Questions

  1. How can a poor attitude squander the resources a family has?
  2. How would Hebrew parents possibly train children up with a diligent attitude to those less fortunate?
  3. How does allowing your child to ‘find their own way’ kill them?
  4. Why do parents excuse their children as ‘free spirits’ when in fact they are ill-disciplined?
  5. Why do you think so many parents believe that their child is strong willed?  How can parents step up and ‘be the parent’?
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About Plymothian

I teach at Moody Bible Institute in Chicago. My interests include education, biblical studies, and spiritual formation. I have been married to Kelli since 1998 and we have two children, Daryl and Amelia. For recreation I like to run, play soccer, play board games, read and travel.
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