My kids are turning out to be two of the best teachers I have ever had. They don’t criticize me, they are merely a reflection of who I am. So, when I hear a wretched tone screeching from my daughter (usually directed at her little brother) I instantly think, “Now where in the world did she learn to speak like that?”
And then the Heavens part and God whispers, “From you.” Wow…talk about a kick in the gut. I am teaching her to handle herself like that? Well, now, that needs to change.
The experience is similar, though not as painful, when my young son starts to parrot cute little phrases like, “How ’bout that?” and I think, “How sweet. Now where did that come from?” Only to catch myself saying it multiples times a day. “We’re going to get Delaney from school now, then we will play outside, how ’bout that?” “We’re going to have chicken, pasta and apples for dinner, then you can have a treat, how ’bout that?”
The amazing thing about this is that it operates in an opposite fashion from normal teaching forums. Usually, your teacher actually tells you what you are doing that is right or wrong. And, if you are anything like me, sometimes the criticism is a little hard to take. But, in this setting, there is no official criticsm, therefore, no one for me to be defensive with.
It is just God putting a great big mirror in front of me all day long so I can see and hear how I really sound.
The beauty of this teaching is my own, personal desire to change what I am seeing. I can work on a calmer tone. I can try to avoid the word ‘no’. I can eliminate the silly catch phrases that punctuate my speech. My kids are preparing me for life in the real world. How Extraordinary!