As we learned from the previous post, choosing love is much more than a warm feeling. Paul continues to show what it looks like to really love your children in I Corinthians 13:
Love is not self-seeking
Love is about not putting yourself first. It is vital that your children see that you are living a life of sacrifice to God, just as you are asking them to do. The goals you set for your home must first and foremost reflect God's direction in his Word. This cannot be done by indulging your own preferences. Sports, music, academic excellence, a quiet home life, and neatness, etc. are all examples of worthwhile activities. But there is no commandment that says your children must perform exactly in these activities as you might like. Don't force your dreams and expectations into the lives of your children. Love is not self-seeking.
Love is not easily angered
Outbursts of anger are not loving. If you are easily angered, either internally or outwardly, something other than love is at work. James' directive here is practical and pointed – be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry. His reasoning for this is clear – man's anger does not produce the righteousness of God (James 1:19-20). Your anger may motivate your children to do what you want, but it will not produce what God wants. And you may find that what you want is not as desirable as you thought.