WORD FOR TODAY
22 March, 2017
Teaching children patience (1)
‘But if we look forward to something we don’t yet have, we must wait patiently and confidently.’
Waiting patiently is what life, God, and success demand. Even when we’ve done the right things, God requires us to wait for the results. ‘You have need of endurance, so that after you have done the will of God, you may receive the promise’ (Hebrews 10:36 NKJV). How do we help our children develop this vitally important life skill? Writer and mother Tammy Darling says: 1) Set clear boundaries. For instance, say, ‘You may have that when I’ve seen you wait patiently.’ Don’t be moved by their demands! 2) Refocus their attention. Queuing in a shop can be an occasion for impatience. So try a guessing game – like ‘I Spy’ – with younger kids, or get older kids talking about family holiday plans. 3) Teach by example. Do you pass other motorists on the road just to get one car-length ahead? Impulsively buy something on a credit card rather than wait until you have the money to buy it? Whether they’re three or thirteen, your children learn by watching you. 4) Avoid constantly saying, ‘Hurry up!’ Toddlers typically dawdle. They’ve no idea how long getting ready takes. So instead of always telling them to hurry, help them learn the process and pace of getting ready. ‘It’s time to put your toys away…time to get your shoes and socks on…time to put your jacket on.’ Instead of frustrating them with commands to hustle, involve them in actions they understand and can handle. This teaches them how to manage time practically.
Deut 10-12, Mark 12:1-27