Many times the innocence of a child can open the eyes of adults. Children say things that are in their hearts without thinking or processing their actions or words. Children are honest and display true thoughts even though they can sometimes seem very crude, not proper or not very nice to say. It is their very own childish but honest way of saying and doing things! They can say the funniest things such as...Hey guess what! My Granny's teeth live in a jar! Kids say so many embarrassing but TRUE and HONEST things that we just have to chuckle and give them a hug!
It is the openness, innocence and honesty of that of a child is why Jesus said that no one can enter the kingdom unless they receive the kingdom of heaven as a child. Those characteristics (as a child) is what Jesus is referring to. When youngsters are exposed to evil doings, cursing, and mistreatment of others they will more than likely practice the same traits as adults. The importance of teaching and showing children how to be Godly during their "impressionable and developmental stages" will help guide them into becoming successful and productive adults who love the Lord! Proverbs 22:6: Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old, he will not depart from it.
Children usually start developing their own personalities between the ages of 5 and 6 years old. It is crucial that we display actions and words that will leave positive impacts on young ones. Children mimic what they see their parents or adults do or say. When we carry ourselves with integrity and Godliness we become excellent examples to the ever watching eyes of our young ones. A little later in life they will begin to start making important decisions of their own. Many of their decisions will intertwine with what was instilled in them during their impressionable years of development. As Christians we are like beacons to the entire world and to all we come in contact with. The easiest way to become wonderful examples to our children and to others is to follow Gods Commandments. They can be found in: Exodus 20:1-17.
Below is a heartfelt story of how children learn from adults or from people who are centered around their lives. Towards the end of this story you will find that it is never too late to openly make a change for the better or to "right a wrong." Asking for forgiveness and repenting is God's way. God is always willing and ready to forgive us when we ask Him for forgiveness!
The Wooden Bowl
There was a very old man who was unable to care for himself any longer. The frail old man went to live with his son, daughter-in-law, and four year old grandson. Age had taken it’s toll upon the elderly man and his hands trembled and shook, he mumbled a lot to himself and his eyesight was blurred. When he walked his steps were unbalanced and many times he would fall. The parents of their small child explained to him that “Pa Pa” was very old and that he was moving in with them. “They were going to take care of Pa Pa!” Their little boy squealed with excitement at the thought of his Pa Pa living with them!
The family ate together at the elegant “family” table. But the elderly grandfather's shaky hands and failing eye sight made eating and living difficult for him. Peas rolled off his spoon onto the floor and onto the elegant custom designed oriental carpet. When Grandfather held his glass his beverages spilled on the fine tablecloth. It would always make him shudder with fear to know that he had created another mess.
The son and daughter-in-law whispered to each other and became increasingly irritated with the messes that "Pa Pa" would continuously make. "We must do something about father," said the son. "I've had enough of his spilled juices, noisy eating, bad table manners and food on the floor every day." He is not a good example for our child! The wife said, "oh but our child loves his Pa Pa and looks beyond his horrible faults! She then said, "but you are right something must be done!"
So the husband and wife set a small table in the corner away from the rest of the family. It was there that the dear old Grandfather ate alone while the rest of the family enjoyed dinner in an array of splendor. Shaking to steady his hands in fear Grandfather had broken another bowl of their fine china. Because of this his son and daughter-in-law found an old wooden bowl in the garage for Grandfather to eat out of every day as he sat at his table in the corner alone. When the family looked over at the corner where Grandfather was sitting, sometimes he had a tear in his eye as he sat by himself. They just kept eating and ignored the tremendous sadness that Grandfather felt! The son and wife had decided to just pretend that the Grandfather was not even there!
In spite of Grandfather's deep sadness the couple still spoke sharp words of disgust to him as he trembled and dropped his fork spilling even more food onto the carpet. The couple thought…well at least he can’t break his “wooden bowl.” It often bothered the daughter-in-law and the son when they had to get up from "their" table and pick up the fork off the floor that Pa Pa had dropped again.
The four year old watched his Pa Pa everyday in silence and would give him a beautiful smile. The child really loved him and "Pa Pa" adored his grandson. One evening before supper, the father noticed his son playing with wooden pieces on the floor. He asked the child sweetly, "What are you making buddy?" Sweetly and innocently the boy said to his dad, "Oh, I’m just making a little bowl for you and mama to eat your food in when I grow up and take care of you too!" I’m finished with yours and now I’m making one for mama! The four year old smiled innocently and went back to working on the his mama's bowl.
The parents were horrified and devastated by what the child said and what he had made for them. Uncontrollable tears started streaming down their cheeks. They did not speak a word to each other but understood each others thoughts. That evening they gave “Pa Pa” a genuine big hug and lovingly kissed him. They took his frail little hand and gently led him back to the beautiful table to sit with everyone. For the rest of grandfather’s days he ate every meal with his family. From then on he was openly “shown” true respect and love. The parents continued to display love and respect towards the Grandfather in front of their son and even when he was not with them! After the actions of their four year old son mommy and daddy did not seem to care any longer when or where a fork was dropped, juice spilled, china was broken or if the tablecloth got soiled ... A lesson learned "Out of the mouths of Babes."
Submitted by Janice Green