Ellen G. White Writings

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Manuscript Releases, vol. 8 [Nos. 526-663], Page 379

MR No. 634—Importance of Parental Establishment of Children's Eating Habits

Our work now is a very solemn, earnest work. We cannot evade it. There is the greatest necessity of education in more lines than one. The one great need with you both is to feel that you must be under supervision to God. You are His property. Your children are His property to be trained as younger members of the Lord's family, not to consider themselves to be especially indulged in any whim and denied nothing. Were you an observer of the same plan of discipline you see others pushing in managing their children, you would criticize them severely. And again, not to indulge yourselves in sitting at the table spread with a large variety of food, and, because you enjoy these things eat them before your children, and say, No, you cannot have this. You cannot have that, it will hurt you, while you eat largely of the very things you forbid them to touch, and your discipline in this line needs the reformation and the principle of practice.

It is cruelty to sit down yourself to the third meal, and take satisfaction in talking and enjoying yourselves while you have your children sit by and eat nothing, representing the excellent discipline your children are under to let them watch your eating and not rebel against your authority. They do rebel. They are young now, but you continue this kind of discipline and you will spoil your authority. Then again you seem to fear when your children are at the table that they will not eat enough and urge them to eat and to drink. You need not have the slightest concern and show the anxiety you have manifested lest they shall not eat sufficiently. Their little stomachs are small and cannot hold a large amount. Better far let them have

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