Matthew 7:9-11: "Which of you, if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake? If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask Him!" (NIV).
Sometimes our kids ask for things that are not good for them. We say "no" out of love even though they may accuse us of being mean. We are able to handle their disappointment and anger because we see the bigger picture. Some parents, however, are so anxious to avoid conflict they say "yes" to things that are against their better judgment. They can't bear to let their kids down or they fear their kids' angry reaction.
Parenting provides a wonderful window into the Father's love for us. We may feel as if God is punishing us when He doesn't say "yes" to our prayer requests. But how many times have you prayed for something you later realized would not have been in your best interest? Without realizing it, we sometimes pray for "snakes," but God loves us enough to say "no."
Demonstrate your love by being strong enough to tell your kids "no."