This week I've been sharing some of our family's core values. It is simple and memorable to a little boy; it ROCKs.
As you have probably noticed, all the character traits in ROCK are positive ones. In a subliminal way I’m hoping to aspire my son to greatness, telling him, I believe you can be:
It sometimes takes more words to be positive (when I feel like I’ve used them all!) Not always, but I try to say, “Can you say that more with more respect?” Instead of saying, “That was disrespectful. Try again.” Being positive also sounds more pleasant in the ears of the hearer – which is kindness.
Probably the loudest sermon I give on kindness is how I treat others – especially those closest to me, like my son and husband. Not to mention pesky neighborhood boys, annoying phone solicitors, or other terrible drivers given to road rage (guilty here, on all counts.)
A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger. - Proverbs 15:1
And you better believe little eyes are watching; little ears are hearing. One day they will emulate you. For better or for worse. Ugh. Hate it when it's for worse. He growls when he's frustrated or angry. Wonder where he got it? Grrr...
Kindness, like the other traits of ROCK, can have many names and faces. Grandma might say this is using your manners. Montessorians would call this grace and courtesy. God's kindness (forgiveness) is meant to lead you to repentance. Anyway you slice it, a child knows the difference between being kind and unkind. Just ask - they're usually brutally honest.
To test my theory, when it was 110* one afternoon, I asked Mr. Intensity, "If we were to take some popcicles to the guys working on the parking lot, do you think it would be kind or unkind?" He knew the right answer and wanted to help.
As I pulled the treats from the freezer the thought occured to me: usually I work hard at being kind/doing acts of service during December - but what about the rest of the year? [Hmmm...need to work on that.]
Some of my fondest childhood memories are of going with my mom to take meals to shut-ins or elderly folks, who didn't feel like cooking and delighted in company. She's super kind, that way. I wanna be like her one day.
Below is the most fun song of the week to help you remember that God empowers his people to be kind. It's also a sneaky way to memorize the Fruit of the Spirit from Galatians 5:22-23. Mostly, we sing this song at bedtime and he usually jumps on the bed the entire time. I bribed him with 2 cookies to sing it on camera, but I think this guy is easier to follow, especially if you want to teach your children.
To give it a twist, you can ask your kids to come up with their own silly fruit.
Thanks for reading my thoughts this week. And thank you for all the kind comments. I have felt loved.