Sunday, February 11, 2007

Seeds of Character

"Sow a thought, reap an act.
Sow an act, reap a habit.
Sow a habit, reap a character.
Sow a character, reap a destiny."
George Dana Boardman, The Younger
American Clergyman (1828-1903)

Yesterday we were working around the house (Yey! I finally felt like working! I have never been happier to scrub a bathtub in all my life...) My best-house-painter-in-the-west husband, Luke, was scaling the 20 ft. heights of our family room painting and our son, his faithful sidekick, was helping him. I was on the other side of the bar/sink area working in the kitchen. Every request that Luke made of Kyle was met with a cheerful "Yes, sir" as Kyle diligently and obediently did whatever his Dad needed him to do: take off the plates around the electrical sockets, bring him supplies, reload his paint roller and hand it up to him. Finally, I said from the other side of the counter, "Kyle, you are working so hard. I really love how hard you are working to help your Dad." "Thanks," he replied from down below. A few moments later I said, "You know, it really honors God for you to work so hard." There was a long pause while he kept rolling paint onto the wall. Finally he asked, "It does?" "Certainly," my husband added, and began explaining to him how it glorifies God to work hard.

As I was scrubbing and listening to a father sweetly teaching his son, I realized that Kyle had been pleasantly surprised to learn that his behavior was honoring and glorifying God. I realized that perhaps all along he thought he was simply pleasing his parents. I really want him to know it's bigger than that; he is pleasing His Heavenly Father. I want to start looking for other ways to let my children know that their goal is not just to honor and please me, but to look at how they can honor God. I want them to know the life-long, abiding peace and joy that comes from a life filled with daily, minute-by-minute choices that honor the God Who made them, saved them, and loves them so dearly.

Something so simple yesterday, but hopefully a seed was sown.


Anonymous said...

Great post, Cyndi! It is so easy to forget to remind them of the big picture. God is the one who commanded that children should honor and obey their parents, so we should certainly help them to understand that they are honoring God when they do this! Thanks for another thoughtful post!

Linda said...

I thought of the verse that speaks about teaching your children about the Lord as you go about your daily life (of course I can't think of the reference off the top of my head). What a wonderful thing to do.

Jenny in Ca said...

what a sweet picture you described.
what a great teaching opportunity.
So true, about obedience to parents honoring God. The bible says that the commandment "honor thy mother and father" is the first with a promise. Can't think of the verse right now...but I am sure you are familiar with it.

Tammy said...

This was a beautiful illustration of how we can sow God's truths into the hearts of our children in everyday living. Wonderful! :)

Kelly said...

One of my favorite quotes! I loved your post and illustration. We have such a responsibility and opportunity as parents.