Topic: Parenting Subtopic:
Text: I Samuel 2:12-36
Parenting has two legs; one is calling/occupational role, and the other is parental role. Many parents (like Eli) are just (faithful), in their calling/profession or occupation but failing in their role as a parent. Parents should understand the need to balance on both legs. However, parental role is not limited to provision alone but also include working out a discipline approach.
One of the greatest error Eli (the priest) committed was lack of early intervention. There is a contrast in adult and children’ developmental mile stone; you decline in strength as a result of aging, while he grows and gain more strength. Verse 23 of the first book of Samuel revealed that Eli only rebuked his children while he was old which denied him enough strength, he needed to rebuke them.
Early intervention has been helping man for decades to curb to some extent the effect of unwanted situations and also been greatly utilized in modern world in enhancing developmental competencies in children. An African proverb says “cut off the branches while still young” Proverb 22: 6 says; train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.
The older a child grows, the harder he becomes to be curb. At this stage, they are more subjected to the influence of peers and socio media.
Questions for Discussion
1. Explain what is meant to discipline a child according to each of the following passages
(i) Proverbs 13: 24
(ii) Hebrew 12:24
(iii) Proverb 23:13
2. Discuss the consequences faced by Eli as a result of his failure to discipline his children (1Sam 2:3136)
Conclusion: Not that Eli did not rebuke his children. He did (1Sam 2:23-25) but it was a medicine after death. It was after they had grown out of his control. He fails to implement early intervention. Running entails good coordination of both legs. Therefore, to run a home, as far parenting is concerned, parents should not fail to coordinate well themselves on both legs involved i.e their occupational role and parental role.
Wherefore kick ye at my sacrifice and at mine offering, which I have commanded in my habitation; and honourest thy sons above me, to make yourselves fat with the chiefest of all the offerings of Israel my people?