this is a 'sabbath rest' repost from november.
my children were ornery little widgets, but they never heard me say,
"be good." 'good' seemed like such a nebulous, lack luster term for
what i wanted from them.
instead, i always urged them to 'be a blessing,' which required
more action and thought. they understood this included kindness,
cheerfulness, obedience, and helpfulness, all actions we practiced
daily at home.
this required me to conform to the same standard, and i assure you,
they would let me know when i was grumpy or impatient. all of us
continuously fell below the benchmark, but we asked forgiveness
and then tried harder to be a blessing to one another.
because i expected this kind of behavior at home, it was natural
for them to act the same way when we ventured out. many tired
mommies slacken standards at home but then have unrealistic
expectations of their children when in public.
consistency is a vital key to training up children in the way they
should go. it's difficult and tiresome, but the reward is happy,
respectful children who are allowed to go many exciting places
with mom and dad.
now that my urchins are mostly grown up, i hear this a lot,
"mom! you can't say that in public!"
"the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness,
goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control."