(Inside: Teach your kids to give from the heart using the once-a-month strategy.)
I didn’t want our family’s Once-a-Month journey of daily showing God’s love in tangible ways to be the parents’ journey – I wanted my kids to be ALL IN too.
This month, we encouraged our kids to listen to their heart and see how God nudged them towards giving, helping, serving and kindness:
But another son (we have three total) – what he did especially made us smile. He’s all boy – his warrior’s heart best connects with people by taking them down. Lots of spunk and energy. (And parents trying to funnel it in positive ways.) Since this encouragement, we’ve noticed him serving us more: sharing more with his brothers, helping me around the house…. But what really impressed me was, he received a blue ticket at school (the highest honor) because he said he’d work with anyone during partner work time. A few days later, I found out there was more to the story. My son had volunteered to partner with his down-syndrome classmate. He has befriended this little boy and has been genuinely excited about playing with him. Oh, my goodness…to see the gentle side of my warrior.
This has made me think.
When we invite Jesus into our lives, He promises to live in us. That means all of the wonderful characteristics of Jesus that made us want to follow Him are actually inside of us. Those qualities that I desire to be bigger in my life: kindness, gentleness, patience, a positive attitude…I just need to make room for them to grow. Sometimes this is intentional, like our family mission to serve more. Sometimes, it just means making space in my life for doing things that rejuvenate me such as writing, reading, jogging, photography – they all give my brain time to ponder and grow desirable qualities.
What an exciting thought: God lives in us and so we can access His qualities at all times. The point of our once-a-month journey was to share God’s love more in a tangible way – but this second purpose seeped out in a powerful way. To KNOW GOD LIVES IN US – so we have access to His transformative power do big things.(Light bulb – on.)
This is the conclusion of our year and we’re officially ending Once-a-Month. I like that routine has become looking for ways to give. However, I know the waves of life will take us back to a place where we forget – and we’ll have to pay attention to this anew.
Thanks for being on this journey with me and holding me accountable to continue. I appreciated your virtual support. And if your own spiritual journey – I’d love to hear about it.
|Our family’s Once-a-Month Giving/Service Projects was featured on parenting.com. (This blog’s original name was Since I Became a Mom before it became Empowered Moms and Kids.)|
If you decide to take use this giving strategy, remember this is YOUR THING. Do what God places on YOUR HEART. Whatever works, big or little. Your family will be moved by however you decide to extend your hand. And hopefully, so will the people you give to.
Read what parenting.com says about the benefits of teaching kids to give:
“The benefits of actively fostering children’s charitable impulses are enormous. Besides helping counter the overdeveloped ‘gimme’ impulse, it gives kids a powerful boost in self-esteem to realize they can make a difference in someone’s life. ‘And as corny as it sounds,’ says Patricia Schiff Estess, a New York City writer and the author of Kids, Money & Values, ‘when you help a child help others, you are helping to create a better world.'”
Favorite eye-opening books that nudged me to see the amazing part of God’s work that we can do daily. Exciting stuff we get to be a part of.
Cheryl is a mom of 3 boys, wife, speaker, high school teacher, and author of Empowered Moms & Kids. She has a Master’s degree in Educational Leadership and is passionate about learning and teaching. On www.empoweredmomsandkids.com you’ll find inspiration and encouragement for moms raising tweens and/or teens. Read more in the “about” section of this page.