We Can’t Give What We Don’t Have

  • If we want our children to display love, they must see us being loving.
  • If we want our children to demonstrate joy, they must see us filled with joy.
  • If we want our children to experience feelings of peace, they must see us filled with peace.
  • If we want our children to have patience, they must see us having patience.
  • If we want our children to demonstrate kindness, they must see us being kind.
  • If we want our children to have goodness, they must see us being good.
  • If we want our children to be gentle, they must see us practicing gentleness.
  • If we want our children to be faithful, they must see us being faithful.
  • If we want our children to demonstrate self-control, they must see us practicing self-control.
  • If we want our children to be listen to us, they must see us listening to them.
  • If we want our children to tell us the truth, they must see us telling the truth.
  • If we want our children to be hard workers, they must see us working hard.
  • If we want our children to love learning, they must see us loving to learn.
  • If we want our children to serve others, they must see us serving others.
  • If we want our children to shun materialism, they must see us shun materialism.
  • If we want our children to make wise use of their time, they must see us making wise use of our time.
  • If want our children to spend money wisely, they must see us spending money wisely.
  • If we want our children to trust in God, they must see us trusting in God.
  • If we want our children to encourage others, they must see us encouraging others.
  • If we want our children to affirm others, they must see us affirm others.

We can’t give what we don’t have.

Or, a more recognizable form of the same idea, “Actions speak louder than words.”

We are fools to spend our time trying to teach our kids to display characteristics that they do not see in us. God’s grace towards our children is greater than our short-comings, but more often than not, a child will reproduce what they see in their parents. When I look at areas that I see my children struggling in, I can usually peek into my own life and find the reason. I have a lot of work to do.

I am thankful for God’s patience. I am thankful for His prodding.

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