Creative discipline

Determination to see a task through, no matter how unpleasant, is a very important attribute to build into your children – one that will benefit them in their school years and throughout their working life. Try these ideas, or come up with some of your own, but do be sure to demonstrate perseverance yourself as you nurture this quality in your kids through consistent and loving discipline.

For a child who invests minimal effort or does not persevere in assigned tasks

Biblical basis

Proverbs 13:4 “The sluggard craves and gets nothing, but the desires of the diligent are fully satisfied.”

Suggested disciplinary action

Withhold the child’s allowance or other treats. For some children, “satisfaction” is a visit to the ice cream truck. For other children this discipline could involve reducing time spent playing computer games or watching television.


Pray with your child, asking God to give them strength and focus to complete the task. Use Isaiah 40:28-29 as a basis for your prayer by incorporating these verses: “Do you not know? Have you not heard? The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He will not grow tired or weary, and His understanding no one can fathom. He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak.”  

For a child having difficulty persevering in a trial

Biblical basis

James 1: 2-4 “Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.”

Suggested disciplinary action

Come alongside your child and encourage him/her to persevere. “Discipline your minds” together and read some of the Scripture verses that talk about God’s help for His people. Examples include Psalm 23, Psalm 27 and Psalm 30. Sing songs of praise together or listen to praise music.


Pray together, thanking God for the trial and how it will help develop character. Read your choice of the following verses:

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 “Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”

Philippians 4:13 “I can do everything through Him who gives me strength.”

Hebrews 10:35 “So do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded. You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what He has promised.”