Parenting requires a great deal of sacrifice. You pour a great deal of time, money, and effort into raising your children. Not many things could more accurately portray Becoming Last. My little guy is certainly worth it and I’m sure you’d say the same about your kids. But sometimes I find myself forgetting that it’s not beneath me to serve him too. Experts normally say that people best learn when their leaders lead by example. So here’s some questions to ask to see if you are Becoming Last as a parent. Disclaimer: I am not a parenting expert. I just love my kid and have some observations about my own tendencies.
- If your child acts out in public, are you consistent with your discipline or do they get the “extra upset” version because you are embarrassed?
- When they directly defy you do you care more about their development than your pride?
- Are you consistent with discipline no matter your attitude, sleep deprivation level, or crazy long day?
- Do you work hard at praising your kids for jobs well done?
- How many times do you say, “I love you!”?
- Do you give them grace occasionally?
- Do you practice what you preach (cleaning up after yourself, washing your hands, saying “please”, etc.)?
- Are you willing to say “I’m sorry” when your voice is too loud or you react a little stronger than you should have?
Just a short list today. I think in parenting we (read “I”) can sometimes become domineering. Certainly, we are the adults and they should listen, but I know I can also practice humility and a servant attitude towards my son.
So, for you parents out there today, how can you Become Last?
I found a cool story in the Vitamin Angels newsletter this month. I love hearing about kids Becoming Last. Here’s the story:
Lemonade for Vitamin Angels
What’s better than lemonade on a hot summer day? Lemonade for a great cause!
8 year old Declan set up a lemonade stand to help teach others about our important work and raised $50! Remember, all it takes is 25 cents to provide one child with vitamin A for a whole year. So in one afternoon, this one child was able to impact the lives of 200 children, and refresh many passersby at the same time! Inspired yet? Get Involved!
What a great example for kids who want to help! Simple, small, yet significant. He helped 200 kids. Awesome! Don’t forget to click our “Help Now” button on the right of the page and have a great Saturday!
Values are better taught through example than through words. Consider one of the first impressions I have of my wife. I had only known her for a week. We were on staff at a camp for the summer and we were walking across a big field going somewhere (I didn’t care where. I was with her!). I know it was right after canteen (snack time) and the kids had left trash all over the place and as we walked she bent down and picked up all sorts of litter. I can’t recall our exact conversation, but it was along the lines of, “Why are you doing that?” and she said, “Why not?”
She may not have meant to teach me anything, but she did. Every time I see trash on the ground I think back to that moment. Now, there is like a gravitational pull beckoning me to pick up trash. Even this morning, I saw a gum wrapper, walked passed it, felt convicted, turned around, and carried it home!
Our lives are this extraordinary textbook for the world to read. What are we teaching?