In our travels we have stayed with quite a few families. Here are some of my observations:
In families where peace reigns, we notice that the children have respect for Father and Mother. You can see it in their faces. The children want to please their parents. They know Father is in charge, and they look to him for answers. Father knows what is best. They know that their mother controls the household to serve their father, and they understand that father rules the family to serve the Lord. When children are made to understand the order and purpose of things, and they live out their role in that order and purpose — that is peace. Of course, wise parents rule and control their family and household with kindness and gentleness and tender loving care. They are fallen creatures themselves, and are not always wise. But the more the family matches the ideal, the more peace reigns.
In families where peace does not reign, we notice that the children lack respect for the Father and Mother. They know that their parents are intent on pleasing them, and they use this as a manipulative tool. The household revolves around the child and his likes or dislikes, his moods, his desires. When the child is displeased, uncomfortable, or inconvenienced, the parents consistently go out of their way to please the child. They think their little child is so smart, or cute, or witty. In other words, the order and purpose and roles of this family are inverted, and anything which might resemble peace for a moment is just a temporary lapse in the ongoing war over who is in charge.
--Harvey and Laura Bluedorn
Read the full article here.