Wednesday, April 22, 2009

TEACH YOUR CHILDREN WELL



I have been overwhelmed by the kindness of so many of you in response to the sadness in our lives the past week. So many of my friends, bloggy and IRL, have spoken kind and healing words that have comforted and strengthened us. Even new friends that I haven't even met yet, have gone out of their way to send me sweet messages. It means so much to me, that I do not know that I have words to express how I feel.


I know that in the grand scheme of thing, this is a very minor occurrence. It really has no great consequence except to those of us who loved this dog. But, it was a monumental sadness to us.



I even had a beautiful, little 3 year old girl come running up to me this morning. She wrapped me in the biggest hug she could and said, "Mrs. Owens, I'm sorry your doggie died." Now, this Mom is a reader of my blog, and she had taken the time to teach her daughter a little about feelings. She told her that Mrs. Owens was sad and explained why. Then she encouraged her daughter to tell me. How wonderful! Moms, many times out children do not deliberately show kindness and empathy, because we do not teach it to them. They do not learn how to respond to someone who is hurting or less fortunate because, we don't SHOW them how. We may TELL them, but , even as young as 3 or 4, they are old enough to DO.


When my boys were younger, they went with me to deliver Meals on Wheels. Now, at first, they were not too happy about doing this, but after a few deliveries, they were beginning to look forward to seeing the people again. And, it was a good opportunity to teach them that if WE did not take food to that person...on that day...they may at eat at all. One of my 3 had a harder time 'getting it' than the other 2. So, the next time we went, even though it was lunch time as we were delivering meals, we did not stop and pick up a burger before we picked up our meals to deliver. Then I, conveniently, had several errands to run afterwards and we didn't get home till nearly time for supper. He was hungry. But, I was not in any hurry to get dinner started. When he complained, loudly, and whining, about how he was 'starving' and couldn't stand it, and would I please get up and start supper. It was then that I reminded him just how Mr. Brown would feel, if someone did not bring him a meal. Better than any lecture or punishment...this showed him just how Mr. Brown would really feel. Never another complaint from him again. Matter of fact, he was very sad when my time was up, and begged for us to do it again.


Moms, teach your children while they are young how to empathize with others...how to put themselves in another's place. Show them the things to do, and teach them the appropriate words to say. Help them understand that this is what Jesus told us to do. These lessons will serve them well the rest of their lives.


And, again, I thank you for caring about our feelings and expressing that to us.


I love this passage from 2 Corinthians...


"Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God." vs.3 and 4...NIV


I also like it from The Message:


"All praise to the God and Father of our Master, Jesus, the Messiah! Father of all mercy! God of all healing counsel! He comes along side us when we go through hard times, and before you know it, He brings us along side someone else who is going through hard times so that we can be there for that person...just as God was there for us."

7 comments:

Musicaljean said...

So true, Tonja! And what a sweet story of that little girl "feeling your pain".

Love Being a Nonny said...

Such wise advice. Thank You!

nancygrayce said...

All children need that life lesson! How is Alex doing?

justabeachkat said...

You've been in my thoughts. How is Alex doing?

What a sweet story of the little girl coming up to you. You're so right...it's wise to teach children early.

Hugs!
Kat

andi said...

Well, speaking of getting it, Luke decided to tell me he took Mercury from my model (my space one) and apparently threw it in the music room when I was planning on Tues. So, if you find little Mercury he will be so happy. He missed play time (most of it) last night at church to help me look for the property he took. Taking a planet is no small thing. :) LOL We stuck a jelly bean on the model and he smiled and well, that is a whole nother blog post. :)

andi said...

Yes, I know that I wrote nother...I wanted to. :)

Darby said...

Tonja... You made me smile! Thanks for your encouragement! Hope you all have a wonderful weekend!!