Chad and I have worked hard over the years to always demonstrate our faith through everyday actions. While kids are young, we are to be Jesus to them. When we teach them how to submit to us it’s because we want them to practice on us so they will be able to easily submit to God when they are grown. We are always quick to correct attitudes which do not display thankfulness. I’ve seen some parents giggle and say “how cute is that”, when their kids display disobedience and whining when they don’t get their own way. Honestly, their embarrassment holds them back from the chore of disciplining their child. Grumbling, complaining and griping are not pleasing to God and should not be tolerated in our homes. Feelings of frustration are normal, of course, but we teach our kids that we are not to be governed by our emotions. We are not to be controlled by them. We are training them to live a self-controlled, spirit-led life.
In every situation there is always something to be thankful for. Children, especially at the teenage stage of development, give temporal things more weight and whatever struggle they are going through seems like the end of the world. It’s our job then reel them in, to encourage them to reel their emotions in and to realize the big picture. In the grand scheme of things, does this really require so much exhaustion of emotions. And those actions cause a yucky atmosphere in our home. One thing we have always reminded our kids is that they should do everything they can to protect the peace of our home. Our home should be a haven of rest to us from the pressures of the outside world and we need to work to make sure that we don’t let complaining or strife have a foothold. It should be a place where daddy is thrilled to come home to and not to walk in the door to hear yelling and yuckiness and make him wish he didn’t come home.
And it’s when we are in peace and joy that our faith can flourish. So it’s vital to protect it. Will we have conflict and differences of opinions, absolutely, but I’ve always reminded them to speak assertively, not aggressively when sharing their opinion toward and about one another and to stop and ask themselves are the words I’m about to share those that will build up or tear down. So, it’s our job as moms to do our best to represent the correct way of showing thankfulness. It is the biggest challenge, yet the biggest blessing to have so much time to do that. For them to see modeled before them, day in and day out, that this is how we choose thankfulness, especially when everything in our world seems to show that we are not walking in victory. The time to show thankfulness is before we see the answer manifested because that is FAITH.
2 thoughts on “Cultivating Thankfulness in Our Children”
Although I don’t have human children, I can apply this to my dogs too and with it govern what kinds of behavior I allow them to have with me and each other. It also applies to guests in my home, and what kind of atmosphere I provide for them while they are here with me. Great stuff, girlfriend!
Very true! We mamas set the tone for the atmosphere we allow in our homes! xo, Jenny