Kids are just like sponges!
They soak in EVERYTHING.
Attitudes and actions are powerful communicators.
Want to know what really scares me? When I hear my kids say and do things they clearly have learned from me. We rub off on our kids. My harsh words sometimes come through - their voices. I hear an older sister snap at a younger brother - using a near perfect match of my wife and my modeling.
1. Actions Speak, but What are They Saying?!
Kids hear our words. Kids observe our actions. They say that actions speak louder than words and I tend to agree. If we are sharing verbally about JOY but our actions are the polar opposite, we are not only sending a mixed signal, we may be cancelling our verbal message altogether. Ouch. Moses admonished us with the sobering statement, "Watch yourselves closely..."
2. Lessons Caught Necessarily Not Taught
Lessons in the Kingdom of God are more likely caught than taught. Lessons will always be taught through direct verbal instruction. Simply understand that the actions we portray carry so much weight. The Bible says, "Be imitators of God." Think if we imitated God knowing that our little flock of children will inevitably imitate...US! I need someone to say "Check Your Attitude".
3. The Combined Effect of Actions and Words!
What if our actions and our words were synonymous? What if one reinforced the other? Confusion stops. Clarity begins. May we live lives in such a way that we could, without hesitation, say what Paul said, "Follow me as I follow Christ."
There have been times that I have shuddered after hearing my dad's voice, tone and inflection coming through my voice. Not because I don't want to be like my dad, rather it just amazes me that I really AM a chip off the old block!
My kids are inevitably going to do things I do, say things I say. This is a huge matter!