—By Father DavidDFO 102321/6/81
(The following letter is from a mother in the Family regarding the case of a retarded boy in her Home, along with Dad's reply:)
[HomeARC note (9/98): The Charter is the current source of Family policy and rules regarding the discipline of minors.]
Dear Loved Ones,
GBY. ILY. YOUR LETTERS ARE SO INSPIRING & the Mags are always a thrill & the new Komix Book No.1 is so nice. We are so blessed! What a wonderful Family to be in, with such a loving father & a loving mother taking so good care of us with Jesus' help. I had a question to ask since awhile & I finally got to write it down. Help me, Jesus‚ to explain the situation the way it is.
IN OUR HOME WE HAVE A LITTLE RETARDED CHILD who will turn three years old in a month (in June). He got saved at 2–1/4 years old. We have been living in the same house since a good year-&-a-half. He is a good year retarded I would say—he doesn't speak very well yet—he says a few words.
I ALWAYS HAD TRIALS ABOUT THIS LITTLE BOY because I always felt he wasn't doing as good as he could because of the lack of discipline in his life & this not being done constantly. About a little more than a year ago—upon visiting us, Hannah of Emmanuel told me that perhaps I could share with his mother, about different things that she could do with him, because Monica & them were not very impressed by the boy's behaviour when they saw him on a previous visit.
I HAD SHARED WITH HER BEFORE AT DIFFERENT TIMES about practical things she could do with him & giving him flannelgraphs‚ starting teaching him to read, etc., which she had started doing with him‚ because Teaching Reading & Montessori Method were first written & tried on children like that. I did again share with her, after this talk with Hannah.
BUT YOU KNOW, I'M SURE THAT YOU CANNOT FORCE ON A MOTHER YOUR IDEA, you can just suggest it. Like I cannot just take her kid & give him the discipline he needs—even though I have been really tempted to do it oftentimes. I have been slapping him occasionally but never gave him some good spankings.
TO COME TO THE POINT—THE BOY IS DOING A LOT OF WEIRD THINGS & I really wonder if he is not possessed by a little evil spirit. When I got pregnant I had a lot of trials to have to raise my new baby to come in his surrounding. Because after reading the Davidito Letters & seeing a little bit of the way you were around Davidito in Tenerife, I just really want to follow the standard you set for the whole World in how to raise our kids for Jesus. Specially babies learn everything from scratch & will do what they see other people doing to them & to others. They are great "imitators."
WHEN I HAD MY BABY & UP TO NOW, THE BOY HAS BEEN A THREAT TO HER & to another baby 2 1/2 months younger. My baby is now 10 1/2 months, the other one eight months. I could not leave her one minute without watching. Even when having her on my lap, he would come & try to put his fingers in her eyes, pull her ears & hair, slap her, etc. Even after explaining to him why he shouldn't do it, he never did better, & I know he understood perfectly well. Even a younger little girl‚ eight months younger than him, would never do something like this. Even other sisters that came here noticed the way he was treating their children, his age or older ones, or younger ones.
WELL, I PERSONALLY DECIDED TO KEEP MY BABY OUT OF HIS SIGHT AS MUCH AS I COULD, 'cause I don't want to have a problem child that's going to throw her toys into other people's faces & throw them around all over the floor & beat other kids up. I believe we have to share all things—but I started wondering if you have to expose your baby to such a disobedient & undisciplined boy if the mother doesn't want to discipline him properly or doesn't really agree if somebody else does it for her. The only man in the house spanked him at different times (not so often)‚ but he has a lot to do & has already two kids of his own & is not always there.
ALSO THIS BOY OF HERS IS A REAL BAD SAMPLE AT MEALTIME, eating horribly, making weird noises with his mouth. Often during the day he makes really weird noises with his mouth. So I suggested to her, after praying about it, that she should not imitate him (I told the others in the house too!) but that every time he starts making these weird noises she should talk with him, encouraging him to learn how to talk, 'cause he wasn't hardly speaking at 2 1/2 but just saying a couple words.
SHE STARTED TALKING MORE TO HIM & HE DID START TO TALK MORE! Now at almost three he still doesn't talk very much—but a bit more than before. He loves when someone reads him stories of the Bible & MO Letters, so he gets lots of them nowadays. I also shared that a child like that needs even more attention than a normal kid. He needs to be kept occupied & never run around with nothing to do because he then gets into mischief. He needs to always be a challenged.
HIS MOTHER IS DOING LOTS OF THINGS WITH HIM NOW but I personally think that without good old-fashioned discipline, he is never going to stop doing all these weird things he does to the other kids & weird noises & foolish spirits he gets into very easily!
WHEN MY DAUGHTER WAS ALMOST SIX MONTHS OLD, I OFTEN PUT HER IN A WALKER. It's quite safe for her & I could do some hand-washing or cleanup or the dishes‚ etc., & check on her easily & often. After coming back from litnessing one afternoon when she was eight months old, I put her in her walker & she left me to go in the livingroom. I went to see what she was doing following her from afar 'cause I knew the boy was in the house.
A FEW SECONDS HAD PASSED BUT THE BOY HAD TAKEN THE OPPORTUNITY of the three or four seconds, he had his two hands around her neck & was strangling her! I'm not exaggerating! I gave him some good bangs with my fist on his bottom. I was real hurt inside. It's right then that I thought that he was perhaps possessed with an evil spirit. The look in his eyes while he was literally strangling her was really mean & weird.
IT'S ALMOST LIKE HE ENJOYS SO MUCH TO HURT & to see a little one being hurt, always sneaking on little kids. I felt bad that I hadn't been quicker even, that I let these few seconds pass by. LHM! It's a bit hard to have your eyes every single second on your kiddy—'cause I've got to do some chores of cleanup, etc.—but I'm watching my baby! But he does even a lot of these weird things right in front of you, looking straight into your eyes oftentimes.
THE SAME DAY IN THE EVENING SHE WAS IN HER WALKER AGAIN‚ in the hall with me. I left her a few seconds to go get my rubber gloves to do some hand-washing. I just went ten steps away, I thought I would have time. The boy must have come out of one of the bedrooms & when I was coming back he was again strangling her, with two hands around her neck! She was moving her head & with her two hands trying to defend herself but to no result.
I TALKED TO THE HOME SERVANT & HIS WIFE & told them I really thought this boy should get a good spanking every time he hurts a kid or a baby. The next day at devotions I shared it with the other mothers also. I shared with them about him & what I thought he needed. It was agreed that the Shepherd and his mother would do the discipline.
I SHARED ABOUT DIANORA OF EMANUELE & RACHEL, how I wouldn't have had the faith to give her so many spankings if Tim & Ed would not have told me you (Dad) were the one who told them she really needed it to break her rebellious & stubborn spirit, & seeing them do it in Tenerife before she actually came with me & the older kids.
BUT EVEN THOUGH THE BOY NOW GETS A LITTLE BIT MORE SLAPS or hair pulled or cheek pinched when he does bad things to others—after this talk we all had together—he still doesn't get these spankings on his bottom that I feel he deserves & needs, to get out of this weird stage he is in—& this done every time he does something bad to the other kids. (AMEN! Dad.)
AFTER READING "CHILD PSYCHOLOGY" AWHILE AFTER‚ I really got encouraged that what I had said was probably right. And after reading "Hong Kong Goolagong" about how the evil spirits like to choke people & children it almost confirmed to me what I thought about the boy being possessed with a little evil weird spirit.
YOU KNOW, AS I THINK ABOUT IT NOW‚ every time he comes to my daughter the first thing he does is with his two hands he always grabs her head & presses it in his hands or grabs her neck—always the first thing he does when he is coming to her, & this is to this very day. He did it at Sunday Fellowship to another little girl of 13-14 months old today. I slapped him for it. (Good!)
I WORKED WITH A LOT OF DIFFERENT KIDS FOR FOUR YEARS—full time—& I have seen a lot of other kids also—but never did I see something like this! The others don't seem to understand very deeply what's happening—or take it seriously! It's not just a physical hindrance but a spiritual one which I think is quite serious! So it's why I thought of asking you what you think about it.
1) AM I RIGHT OR WRONG TO SAY HE NEEDS GOOD DISCIPLINE, good spankings & this being done constantly not just once here & there—even if he is a bit retarded? (Dianora had something wrong with her head bones, but nobody dwelled on it. She got disciplined anyway & more than the rest of the kids! And after many months of spankings almost everyday she turned into a piece of gold—an independent little kid who loved Jesus & others & was a good sample & a real mommy for the other kids.)
2) LOVE NEVER FAILETH—but is it loving a child to let it grow weird like that so that he will never be a good witness for Jesus? And hurt others everyday? (No!—Discipline!)
3) IN A CASE LIKE THAT, is it the right thing to do to separate your baby as much as possible from a child like this? If you cannot discipline him the way he should be?
4) A CHILD THAT GOT SAVED—can he still be possessed with an evil spirit part of the time or all the time? (No, but sometimes misled.—D.)
5) IF I SEE THAT THE CHILD NEEDS A SPANKING‚ even if it's not my child‚ & the mother might not agree or be too happy with it if I give him one, but she does not correct him properly even if she got shared with often on how to do it—should I give him the spanking anyway if it's for the sake of the other kids & babies being hurt & mistreated & for that kid to learn his lesson? (Yes—all of U!—D.)
6) MOTHER EVE HAD WRITTEN ONCE that mothers were to love their children & the fathers were to be the disciplinarians. But in many cases that I saw & experienced too, if the mother doesn't learn how to discipline her children beside giving them lots of love—they don't obey & respect her as much & climb on her skirt every time daddy or the one who disciplines them is not there. So often, I saw it when the daddy is not there, the child whines around his mother for every little thing. It's like Hell on Earth. (Sorry!)
SO I WAS THINKING THAT IT WOULD BE GOOD FOR EACH MOTHER TO LEARN HOW TO HANDLE & DISCIPLINE HER OWN KIDS so when daddy is travelling or if he is not around—or if there is no daddy because the child is a Jesus baby—then the mother just disciplines her own kid & doesn't depend on a brother coming to live in the same house for awhile & after another one, & another one—never having the same person doing it because she doesn't want to do it herself. It's something that has to be learned by every mother I think. What do you think? Am I wrong? Every time I slapped the boy‚ he would respect me more afterwards & be more obedient afterwards. (Amen! Prov.22:15.)
7) SHOULDN'T A MOTHER OF SUCH A DANGEROUS KID watch him better and not let him run around the house alone—but supervise him a lot more? I feel it's going in one ear & getting out by the other what she has been shared about her kid. If she would supervise him more & not let him run around alone so much, then she would catch him when he does these weird things & could deal with him every time & help him to grow. (Amen!)
I KNOW IT'S HARD TO HAVE TO WATCH CHILDREN WELL & supervise them well, it's often a sacrifice when we feel like finishing this letter or this or that or doing this or doing that. But if Jesus gives them to us, I feel we'd better raise them properly & educate them properly in God's way or find someone to do it if we can't do it. If not I feel we are worse than the selfish Systemites who take the pill so they don't have to take care for the kids & raise them.
I'M TAKING SO MUCH OF YOUR TIME, but it would be so good to hear from you about these things & it might even profit others in the Family if something was written about "retarded children" & how to handle & discipline them. I know it will profit to me to hear what you think about all these & to have my questions answered. I send lots of love & prayers with this too long letter, I often pray for you‚ your health, security‚ inspiration, etc.—I love you. (GBY! ILY!)
(Dad's Reply, 21/6/81:)
1. I DON'T THINK A RETARDED CHILD IS A GOOD INFLUENCE ON THE OTHER KIDS. This particular case sounds demonic to me. They ought to sock it to him every time they ever catch him hurting her, harming the other children or being rough with them in any way. They ought to really [discipline] that violent spirit out of him! The Bible says, "Foolishness is bound in the heart of a child; but the rod of correction shall drive it far from him." (Pr.22:15.)
2. I'LL TELL YOU, AS SOON AS THESE EVIL SPIRITS FIND THAT CRIME DOESN'T PAY, even his own little evil spirit, they'll quit! So whether it's his evil spirit or a demonic possession‚ they need to really get tough with him or it, to get rid of it as well as praying definitely & desperately to cast it out. It sure sounds like an evil spirit to me, whether it's his or somebody else's.
3. THERE MUST BE SOMETHING WRONG WITH THE MOTHER TO BEGIN WITH, OR THE LORD WOULDN'T HAVE ALLOWED IT. And if the mother doesn't want to give the discipline or can't, then she should let other people in the Home [help discipline him]! But if they won't or can't because she won't let them do it, the other mothers with children ought to move! If she won't do it & they can't persuade her to let them do it, they ought to move! I wouldn't care to have my child reared with some kind of a weird retarded child anyhow.
4. I'VE TOLD YOU WHAT I THINK ABOUT THOSE CASES. I really think if they show a wrong spirit like that kind of a violent hurtful spirit, the retarded child ought to be separated from the others, & you can't get them separated in one small Home—or be delivered!
5. NOW THERE ARE SOME RETARDED CHILDREN, MONGOLOIDS‚ WHO ARE VERY SWEET, who have a very sweet spirit, very childlike, very docile & there is nothing wrong with them spiritually; they literally are just somehow mentally retarded. But with a child that shows a violent Satanic streak & devilish behaviour, I would say there is something wrong with the child spiritually & it's dangerous to have it around other children.
6. THE MOTHER OR THOSE IN CHARGE OUGHT TO REALLY TAKE AUTHORITY IN THE SPIRIT & REBUKE THE DEVIL & all of them lay hands on the child & cast the evil spirit out of it. Then just get tough with the child as far as discipline is concerned until he finds that crime does not pay & he's going to get a spank himself every time he hurts the other children or is even mean to them—blow for blow!
7. IF THEY DON'T GET THE VICTORY OVER IT & DISCIPLINE THE CHILD & CURE HIM or get the devil cast out of him or the devilishness, then he should be separated from other children. He shouldn't be allowed to live in a Home with other children to endanger them.
8. AND WE MUST REMEMBER THAT IF THERE'S A RETARDED OR DEFORMED, CHRONICALLY SICK OR HANDICAPPED CHILD, queer child or baby born in a family, there is usually something wrong with the mother or father that God is chastening them for & either trying to teach them a lesson or simply punishment for their past sins or present sins. It's certainly not the child's fault.
9. PROBLEM CHILDREN ARE USUALLY THE RESULT OF PROBLEM PARENTS & the very fact that the mother will not discipline the child severely for such serious behaviour shows something is wrong with her. I think such a child if not actually dangerous is a very bad influence on other children & can drag down the whole Home.
10. IF THE PROBLEM IS NOT CURED & THE CHILD DELIVERED‚ & I would say that if the mother will not consent to strict discipline &/or that the child does not respond to prayer & firm treatment, then they both should be separated from the Home. They're both a bad influence on the rest of the Home & its kids.
11. THE IDEAL IS FOR THE MOTHER TO REPENT OF HER SINS which have caused it in the first place & to be willing to consent to strict discipline for the child, & if earnest Family prayer for the child's deliverance & healing still does not get results, I think the child should be separated from any Home with children because it could be a very bad influence on the other children if not actually dangerous! I'd be interested to know under what circumstances they permitted such a mother & child to join their Home, or was the child born into the Home?
12. AS I'VE SAID, WE CANNOT ALLOW ONE HANDICAPPED SOLDIER TO DRAG DOWN THE WHOLE ARMY, nor one rotten apple to spoil the whole barrelful. The problem has to either be cured or the family delivered from it. I'd be interested to know the circumstances of the mother's spiritual experience & her spiritual condition at the time of conception & during pregnancy which are such a great influence on an unborn child—for good or evil!
13. THERE MUST HAVE BEEN SOMETHING WRONG WITH HER RELATIONSHIP WITH THE LORD or with somebody else or others, or the Lord would not have allowed such a thing to happen as a punishment for her sins or as a chastening to teach her a lesson. But whatever it was, the Scripture says in Hebrews 12 "rather let it be healed."—Exorcise it!
14. SO SHE SHOULD CONFESS & REPENT OF HER SINS WHICH CAUSED IT, acknowledge it & ask for deliverance, & then the whole family should pray desperately for the deliverance of the child so that at least its spirit changes from a bad spirit to a good one; or I would suggest that perhaps both should be separated from the Family & certainly from a family with other children on which the retarded child could be a bad influence or even a danger.
15. IT COULD BE THAT THE WHOLE PROBLEM HAS DEVELOPED FROM A LACK OF DISCIPLINE IN THE FIRST PLACE, the mother's own self–discipline & her lack of discipline for the child. Whatever it is, it should either be corrected or not tolerated in the Family. May the Lord help you in Jesus' name! We'll sure be praying for you & the situation. God bless & keep you & your children. In Jesus' name, amen.
16. PERSONAL P.S.: GBY‚ Dear, I still love you dearly & remember our Days of Heaven together in Tenerife. Thanks for all your love, loving help there & always. GBAKY in Jesus' name & loving service. Yours forever,—Dad.
17. P.P.S.: COULD IT BE THAT THE LORD IS ALLOWING YOU TO HAVE THIS PROBLEM because you failed to answer His call when you were needed elsewhere when more than once we suggested you might help in one of our World Service Units where you were desperately needed with your wonderful talent for teaching children? Could it be because you failed the Lord & us at those times?—I hope not, but it's possible! Perhaps you didn't know the invitation was from us‚ but it was a test from the Lord‚ but you said you preferred to FF.—So sorry, but we reap what we sow.—Love,—Dad.