Want to meet a tough critic? Talk to a kid.
If you’re a parent, you know kids don’t need to be taught how to be rude or harmful. They need to be taught kindness though.
The best place to start building polite people is at home. If you make a habit of saying positive courteous things to your children and your spouse, they witness them. They absorb the idea. It’s a start.
If we want it to become a habitual way of life, then we must encourage them to do it too. At the table, go around and have everyone say 5 nice things to one another. Encourage interior words rather than exterior words. In other words, point them toward things like, “you have a gentle attitude” or “you are smart” instead of “you have nice teeth” or “I like your eyes.”
If we expose them by what we do and say and encourage them in what they do and say, we’ll find ourselves impressed by who they become.
Some Bible verses show us what we don’t want. Joseph and his brothers give insight into our least favorite practices in raising children. God still used it for good, but Dad’s focus on one child (Joseph) over his brothers, brought envy into the home and took years to overcome. It’s not my goal, how about you?
When his brothers saw that their father loved him more than any of them, they hated him and could not speak a kind word to him.
What words did you hear and observe as a child which have stuck with you until today?
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