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Establishing and keeping appropriate limits for your young child
By Mark Strohm, Jr..
Loving limits, those rules to live by as well as the expectations we place on our child’s behavior and performance, are important if we want our child to obey and accomplish anything in life. But perplexing questions on how to set and keep these loving limits often keep us from proper parenting. Loving Limits addresses these questions. Mark Strohm’s clear and simple answers will give parents direction in how to set limits and how to enforce them.
Mark Strohm, principal of Delaware County Christian Elementary School for 3 years, has worked with children and families for 26 years. Mark has been teacher, children’s pastor, adjunct professor, and school principal. He has taught parenting Sunday School classes and has been guest speaker for children and middle school parent meetings. His observations and insights into the needs of parenting will be refreshing and helpful to many. He and his wife Ellen are raising four children ages 15 to 22. He presently holds a Masters degree in Educational Leadership. Mark teaches two seminars, one based on the book Loving Limits and the second on Cyber Safety (CyberSafetySeminar.com.) Mark writes a blog for parents entitled Loving Limits at http://blog.colossians2.com.
Mark is co-founder of two websites—ThriftyTimes.com—encouraging contentment and wise spending
Colossians2.com—Journal Journeys, a site encouraging Christians to journal as they learn and grow
Published by Delaware County Christian School
Why Loving Limits?
Have you ever tried to plant grass on the side of a hill? On my drive to school I would pass a small Baptist church, which had gone to battle trying to grow grass on a slope leading to a small water retention basin. Early in the summer heavy rains washed out the young growth forcing them to re-rake and re-plant the seed. Unfortunately, three more storms came and three additional efforts were put forth. With the hot summer came a dry spell. They seeded and watered faithfully trying to get grass to grow enough to be established. Regrettably, by the time fall came, the grass died and gullies formed forcing them to start all over again. I felt bad that an entire summer’s hard work proved to be futile. Because there was no grass on the hill to start with, nothing held the seed on the slippery slope.
If there had been established grass, the roots of the older vegetation would have prevented the soil from eroding giving the new seeds a stable soil base as well as protecting it from the sun, wind and rain. This protection would have given the new seeds a chance to grow. The parallels with parenting today are striking. To under parent and not take an active role in the lives of our
children is to leave them vulnerable on the side of the hill. We would be expecting them to take root without the benefit of our established, deep roots. Trials, temptations, societal pressures and the like all come like rainstorms. If we are not engaged and taking an active role through establishing and enforcing loving limits, we are leaving our children exposed on the side of the hill one step away from a disastrous rainstorm.
God has established a system for grass to reseed itself on the side of a hill. While the older, established grass with its deep roots keep conditions stable and weather the storms, the young, susceptible grass gets a chance to establish roots of its own. So we as parents need to sink our roots deep into the Word of God. Loving limits help protect our children so that they can establish roots of their own. My desire for you as parents is to understand the importance of and be encouraged to establish and maintain loving limits.
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