Raising children with special needs as a Christian parent isn’t easy! One of the tools you need in your toolbox is a bit of Christianese we call “discernment.”
What is discernment? Webster’s Dictionary defines it as, “the quality of being able to grasp and comprehend what is obscure.” In Christianese, though, it has a slightly different meaning. GotQuestion.org has a slightly different answer:
Discernment is the ability to properly discriminate or make determinations. It is related to wisdom.
The only way to truly learn to be discerning is through the Word of God. Hebrews 4:12 says,
For the Word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.
So we understand that discernment is very important, and it involves wisdom and heart. Last night, I taught my kids Proverbs 3:13-14 and told them that wisdom is the knowledge to know how to make good (Godly) choices. And the heart is the source of good and evil. Your intentions are shown by the slant of your heart.
GotQuestions also says that, “A discerning mind demonstrates wisdom and insight that go beyond what is seen and heard.” That means we need to know what is behind something – God or the enemy – and only the Holy Spirit can teach us that. In fact, after you are saved, your “vision” or how you view things might change considerably. It might only change a little as well, For me, it was like a veil was torn down on somethings.
Proverbs also speaks about discernment, and tells you where to learn it – in God’s word.
4 Ways Discernment Helps Parents Raising Kids With Special Needs
- It helps you determine what shape your child’s heart is in, even if they are nonverbal.
- It helps you limit your child’s exposure to ungodly things.
- It helps you see through the false and ungodly acquaintances, friends or influences they may have in their life.
- It helps you make good choices for them, until they can themselves, and that will train them up in the ways of God.
How to “Get” Discernment
It can only be “gotten” as a gift from the Holy Spirit. To grow it, you must:
- Walk closely with God daily
- Read Scripture daily (I recommend twice a day)
- Pray as often as you think of it
- Study and meditate on the Word at least weekly
- Ask God to give you discernment regarding your children.
Watch my Scope below.