Monday, August 18, 2008


On Friday, I shared a simple acronym our family is using to remember how we should live. It ROCKs.


Over the course of the next few days, I'm going to elaborate what these words mean to our family.

Why is it important to teach children respect?

First thing that comes to my mind - it is easier to correct/punish/rebuke/discipline (whatever word your family uses) a 3 year-old than it is a rowdy teenager. I'd rather him grasp it now, in the security of my home, than when he's 19 - being tased by a police officer because he refuses to comply.

We've all seen the COPS shows where the drunken guy is so disrespectful. If the unlawful citizen were to at least be polite - or shut his mouth - he might get a lesser sentence.

My grandmother would say, "You'll catch more flies with sugar than vinegar."

Another word for respect is honor. The fifth commandment is "Honor your father and your mother." (Exodus 20:12) Why honor your parents? Moses answered that question: "That your days may be long..." The New Testament adds, "that it may go well with you" (Ephesians 6:2.) If it makes God's top ten list, I better be teaching it to my children.

Romans 13:7 says it this way, Pay to all what is owed to them: taxes to whom taxes are owed, revenue to whom revenue is owed, respect to whom respect is owed, honor to whom honor is owed.

Better than any of the above lofty arguments is one that resonates with a preschooler. Treat others the way you want to be treated. Some call this The Golden Rule. Recorded in Matthew 7:12, Jesus said, "So whatever you wish that others would do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets." Basically, all of the Old Testament can be summed up by saying, "Do unto to others as you'd have them do unto you."

When Mr. Intensity is being demanding, sometimes I ask him, "Would you like for me to talk to you in that tone?" Silence. "Think about how you would like for me to talk to you then ask again." He's much more respectful the second time around…usually.

Respect is the foundation for so many positive behaviors. Truth telling can fall under the category of respect. From what I can recall, he's not yet lied to me. I'm not so naive to think that he won't ever lie. However, when he does, we will talk about how telling the truth is not only being respectful to others, but also to yourself. Other disrespectful behaviors that will not be tolerated in our home: stealing or cheating.

During our family worship time (which lasts all of 15 minutes, if that long), last week Hubby introduced the acronym ROCK. We started the time by singing the familiar, "The wise man builds his house upon the Rock" as well as the second verse, "the foolish man builds his house upon the sand."

We asked questions of Mr. Intensity like
- Who do you want to be, the wise or foolish man?
- Who is the Rock? Since we are Christ-followers, our Rock is Jesus.

Our verse of the week was Proverbs 1:7 The fear (or, respect) of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge; Fools despise wisdom and instruction.

We said the verse together, then took turns repeating it. Throughout the week, we reviewed the verse at random times. A week later we all have it memorized.

So, now dear reader, what will you add to the subject of respect? I'd love to hear your thoughts.

Tomorrow's post will hash out the letter O - Obey.


John and Pam said...

Way to go! Good job on the respect aspect. I wish more parents were like you, but at least I am priviledged to have my grandson's parents teaching him respect.

Erin said...

That's seriously awesome! I love ROCK and can't wait to read about your thoughts on the other three letters.

Anonymous said...

Great Job. I think you said it all. I have a feeling I will be dealing with respect when it comes to attitude ;) I like that you have JI ask the question to himself first and then ask him to try it again.

MerrandaVK said...

You will often hear "Please talk with respect." in our house. WE picked up that phrase from Justin's montessori preschool last fall. That is one of the mail rules in his classroom, and it was easy to filter down to our own home. From his classroom we also picked up "yes, please" or "no thankyou". They have to answer yes/no questions with these two phrases and now those answers come with ease (usually:)

I can't wait for the other 3 letters too!

I love ROCK. Love it! Easy. Simple. Fun.

Melanie said...

What a great and hilarious banner pic on your blog--I love it! :)

Bee said...

I'm so glad to have found your Blog from "Love-Laugh-Learn"
I recently spoke to my husband about creatively teaching our children. But felt a little frustrated since I lack creativity...
THANK YOU for this idea! I am going to use it and adapt it to for my family (3 children ages 5, 3, 1)

This is an answer to my prayer!


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