Thursday, May 17, 2012
The children that people often label as "good" have the personality type that loves control. This need for their world to be in control is why they LOVE rules, sometimes to the point of compulsion. They love to follow them and get mad when others do not. These types often push themselves to get good grades and desire to show themselves to others as being polite. So they appear "good," but it really does not denote any sort of character or goodness of heart. Good behavior can be present in a sinful heart.
Then there are the "bad" kids. They are not concerned with impressing others or getting the top score. They are way too relaxed and fun loving to think about such things. Therefore, they forget to say "please" and "thank you" because they are not looking for adoration in adults eyes or to beat out the kid next to them in the "goodness" contest. While other kids may be driven or task oriented, these kids are not. Since this is the case, they are the kids dropping their pencils 7 times while doing their school work or who get messy and spread their mess without a thought. Rules are not as important to them. Just as above, this does not necessary show they have any worse character than a "good" child. They can have a good heart, but just lack training and disciple, which is something that comes more naturally to "good" kids.
Not looking under the surface of a child can lead to great problems in their future. The "good" kids forget that it is the WHY you are good that is important and without good character they could follow unGodly rules. The "bad" kids have been made to feel that they are bad. They believe bad is all they are capable of. With out character and discipline their talents will be wasted and the Kingdom will miss their contribution.
We all have our "hooks" or parts of ourselves that make us consistently pick that wrong choice. All children need training in character and a God centered, Gospel filled lifestyle. Apart from God, we cannot achieve purity, which is true "goodness." Step one is always to know you need God's help, a step that is very easy for a "good" child to overlook and for a "bad" child to feel unworthy of. Character training involves those day to day teachable moments, as well as sitting down to study the definition, spiritual meaning and application of a the trait itself. That is why Deuteronomy states it is going to take the morning, the evening and every hour in-between! This responsibility is not a weight or pressure, but is a guilt free, simpler approach to children that is more effective.
Thursday, May 3, 2012
For me, writing thoughts down helps me to learn and remember what I am reading. So, for my daily devotions I purchased a Standard Diary, Daily Reminder for the year. All the dates are printed on the page, and there is plenty of room for notes. What I like about this diary is that it is hardback and bound. This way I can keep each year, and look back on my past thoughts.
In my diary I copy the 2 prayers in the Discovery devotional for that day, always writing it from my point of view. Then I answer or copy the application. I always do those 3 things. If there is a scripture in the daily reading I want to remember or makes an impression on my, I copy this down also. Of course, if I have any thoughts either from the reading, devotional, or just from my life at the moment, I record those too. Finally, at the bottom, I may write one sentence about the day. For example, "JP lost his first tooth"; or "We went on a field trip to a garden today." Little treasures I want to visit again!