Good Morning! I have a guest post this morning written by my sister, Shari. In honor of Father’s Day and our own father, she writes from the heart about an important facet of child rearing – discipline. Something, perhaps, that is sorely needed now as much as it ever was. Enjoy her missive and please feel free to comment. We would love that. Blessed Father's Day to all.
WHITE HAT BLACK HAT
Lucas McCain where are you?
By Sharon Wible
The home of my childhood was prosaic in its structure, provincial in its worldview and moral in its consequences for good and bad behavior. In the minds of myself and my siblings there were not a lot of questions as to what was acceptable conduct. Punishment was swift and painful and every wrong doing was instantly judged as having been done “on purpose” ruling out the necessity of a jury. All misdeeds went straight to the judge for sentencing.
This method happens to be a very quick way to bring order to a household filled to the brim with children.
EXCEPT, Lucas McCain would disagree and because I loved him, I had to reevaluate the discipline style so feared in my youth.
The Rifleman had the same philosophy as my dad for taking care of bad behavior. BUT he had a lot of help! The bad guys always wore black hats and sneered when they spoke. The good guys wore white hats and were pleasant, happy people.
Lucas had a rapid-fire Winchester.
Over and over again this truth was reiterated; if someone threatened your life you had every right to protect yourself. When the bad guy drew his weapon, the Winchester meted out judgment pure and true.
With his son, Lucas taught lessons of right and wrong with humor and hope. When the son strayed from the path, justice was given pause as mercy worked its way into the son’s soul. When the natural consequences of misguided actions took their toll, the pain of disappointing his father seemed punishment enough for the boy.
But television fantasy doesn’t play too well in the lives of non-scripted people in the real world. My dad didn’t own a gun and there were no evident criminals running loose. Dad also understood his children were not “evil” in the truest sense of the word. But at the end of a long and harried day at work with mom at the stove and kids running wild; order was necessary and swift correction cut short a longer war.
If love and respect for the father has been cultivated, disappointing dad will often be deterrent enough to keep the bad deeds at bay.
Thank you Lord for fathers!
Image: Our mom, Elaine and our dad, Wendell.