The aim of most strict parents is to protect their children. They may have experienced something that they're trying to shield us from, or they may recognize dangers in certain activities that we don't. Parents sometimes make rules tougher when they need to discipline us or to teach us to be more responsible. Whatever the case, parents who are strict are usually that way because they're trying to be good parents. One of the downsides of being young is that we don't have as much insight into our actions as our parents do. A lot of things seem harmless because we don't have enough life experience to see long-term consequences.
When our parents give us limits and force us to abide by rules that we don't think are necessary, there's usually hidden rationale that we don't recognize. Ephesians 6:12 points out: "Our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms."
For example, by making your curfew 10 p.m. and not midnight, your parents know that you'll be sharing the road with fewer drunk drivers on your way home. When they limit your phone or computer time, they get you in the habit of living a balanced life, so that you'll manage your time better as an adult. When they make you stay and wash every last dish before you go out, they're teaching you how to be self-sufficient and responsible later on. The list could go on.
Unfortunately, most of us never say anything such as, "My dad wouldn't let me go out again last night. He must really love me." It's a lot easier to accept what our limited understanding of the situation suggests: that our parents are old, out of touch, and understand nothing about what we're dealing with.
It's important to learn to trust our parents, though, because our relationship with our parents parallels our relationship with God. It's our parents' job to teach us how...
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