Thursday, February 16, 2012

Are You Being Rude to your Children?


Are you being rude to your children?

The world is quite a stressful place. Children are not able to grasp why adults are so busy. Yet, they do understand when they are put on the back burner. How often have you told your children to 'go play' as you talk to a friend about a situation. They go find something to do for a short while and then come back to you.

'Didn't I tell you to go play?' is a term often used at this time. The child turns around to find something else to do but overhears you speaking about them. If you overheard someone speaking about your behavior in a negative way, you would be highly offended. It would be a rudeness that you would not soon forget. Yet, why is it all right to talk about your children who are only ten feet away from you?

If you were excited about something and phoned a friend, how would you feel if they said.. 'That's nice honey, I'm busy right now?'

Often times adults are speaking and a child has no idea what they are talking about. If they ask 'who is that Mommy?', how do you reply? I've often heard adults say 'this is grown up talk'. Now, stop and think about how rude that feels? Let's say you are in a group setting and the conversation goes to a subject that you do not understand. You ask politely, 'what are you talking about?' How would you feel if they answered 'this is confidential and not meant for your ears'. You would feel left out wouldn't you? A better way to handle delicate conversation with our children is to make sure we are not gossiping. If it is an important conversation meant for adults only, keep it out of your children's earshot.

When someone is upset and then takes it out on you, you get very upset. Yet, how often do we adults react badly to our children when we are tired or upset. Little children are still in need of attention and guidance even when your car crashes, or you get fired. A screaming answer to them does nothing but frighten them. After a while, they get used to the snarl and their hearts harden to it. Their heart then hardens to many other things as well. As they grow, you will be distant.

When you make a mistake at work or with another adult, they might ask you 'Why did you do that?' Yet, children seldom know why they do anything. A better question is 'What did you do?' Then, explain why that was wrong. You need not tell everyone what they did though. Embarrassing a child is just as bad as someone embarrassing you. Mercy triumphs over judgment.

We hate it when someone brings up the past mistakes of our past. It isn't right to do that to our children either. We teach our children to hold grudges when we constantly throw their past mistakes up in their faces. We teach our children to forgive when we encourage them with love.

Your words can be building blocks to character or a demolition crew to our children's hearts. What you say in the heat of anger can not be erased from our children's memory very quickly. Speak to your child with the same respect you want to be spoken to.

Our children are not toys, or objects for us to use. They are young people who the Lord loves as much as the adult. We are given a gift of children. Their free spirit of creativity is a joy in any household. They need nurturing and constant care. It can be tiring and often demanding. Yet, we can reign in our emotions and guide them with the love that was given to us so freely.

Jesus was never rude to a child. He made time for them amidst a busy ministry. As my children have grown into adulthood, I have grown as well.

I was not the perfect parent and in fact failed at it many times. Yet, God is never unwilling to teach us to be better parents. I do not always agree with all they think and do. Yet, rather than be rude...I have learned to let love be the first emotion.

Our children need affirmation and approval just as much when they are 50 as they did when 5 yrs old.

I Corinthians 13:4-8'  Love is patient, love is kind.  It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.  It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered it keeps no record of wrongs.  Love does not delight in evil, but rejoices with the truth.  It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.  Love never fails...'

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