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Of course, joy isn’t happiness, it’s peace in the storm.

The Hebrew word translated “child” only applies to individuals age 5 and older.
There is no discussion in the Bible of disciplining “babies” (those under five).

So, use this time to get to know your baby. Ask yourself what she’s trying to tell you with her actions. Does she want to play when she is throwing food? Clean her up and give her something appropriate to play with. Is she done? Clean her up and get her on to the next activity. Is she thirsty? Get her a drink. Is she out of the one thing on her plate she was enjoying? Offer her a little more. Learn to speak her language as she’s learning to speak yours.

Start the discipline (teaching), but don’t expect her to get it all at this age. She’s learning so much! To walk and talk and explore and . . . the list goes on. Think on discipline at these years as shaping her exploration and learning. Teach her HOW to do something successfully. Your child will learn to walk with or without your help. Instead, teach her where it’s safe to walk, to walk holding your hand, to walk towards you when you need her.

Take this time to earn her trust, meet her needs, teach her an emotional vocabulary, invest in your relationship.

Anytime I find myself asking, “What do I need to do in response to that?” I realize I’ve slipped into being reactive. I want to be proactive – that means learning from each situation so I’m ready to face it next time with a plan. You are learning how to be a mother and learning how your child learns. You need to know this before you really get into teaching her the big stuff – the God stuff.

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