It is so important to watch what we say and how we speak to our children. Don’t get me wrong, we ALL have our bad days, but we can choose to speak life or death, positivity or negativity. Choose life! Our kids and their walk with Christ depends on it. Here are 4 reasons why it’s so important to watch how we are speaking to our children:
- We are our children’s example.
Whether we realize it or not, our children are watching our every move. Good and bad. If we expect our children to remain calm when they are upset or angry, then we must act that out in our own situations. If we want our children to speak to ourselves and others with respect, then we must be doing the same. If they hear us speaking rudely, mumbling under our breath, or just plain being mean towards someone, our children will think it’s okay to do the same, or they won’t take us seriously when we reprimand them for doing it.
Of course we are human, and we expect our children to be human too. We all have days that we get a little angrier than we would have liked (more like wanting to rip our hair out & hide in a closet lol). If we do lose our cool in front of our children, it is so crucial to go to them afterward and apologize. This has been something important I have been making a point to do ever since God put it on my heart. If we expect our kids to be honest and open, we have to be too. We have to learn to humble ourselves and say, “I’m sorry I yelled at you that way, that was wrong of mommy to do.” They need to know that we make mistakes sometimes too. In doing this, we show our children that we’re human too, and how important it is to be honest, admit when we are wrong, and ask for forgiveness. Now never excuse what they did or how they acted, but make sure they know that you were wrong too, no matter how rude they were.
- Words hurt, whether it’s tone or content.
So many times I have found myself saying to my oldest, “Watch your tone. It’s not always what you say but how you say it.” Well, one day the holy spirit spoke so boldly to me after I had said that, “Do you watch your tone? Is it okay for you to be moody and irritated but not him?” WOW!! That was like a kick in the gut. So many times our kids call our names or ask a question and we are so tired that we just get irritated. Sometimes he has called my name and I will answer in a snappy tone, “What?” And all he wanted to say was I love you. You always get that twinge of guilt afterward. Again, we are their example.
“The tongue can bring death or life; those who love to talk will reap the consequences.” Proverbs 18:21 NLT
We have the power to speak positivity and love, or death and destruction. We WILL reap those consequences. Do you want your children to be uplifting and positive? Or crabby and rude? Do you want them to go down the right path because we were loving and encouraging? Or choose the wrong one because we were preoccupied and doubtful.
- Jesus is patient with us and He is our greatest example.
Jesus is so patient with us. The Bible tells us that we are to live our lives as Christ did. He gave the ultimate sacrifice! As Christians, we are to be an example every day of God’s mercy, love, and kindness. Especially to our children. We will never ever be perfect. As Christians, we are always growing, learning, and maturing. God has new mercies for us every day. We have to do the same for our children. We have to be patient and forgiving, kind and tenderhearted.
“Those who say they live in God should live their lives as Jesus did.” 1 John 2:6 NLT
“Instead, be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you.” Ephesians 4:32 NLT
- Our Hearts.
The bible says in Proverbs 4:23-24, NLT, “Guard your heart above all else, for it determines the course of your life. Avoid all perverse talk; stay away from corrupt speech.” We must guard our hearts. When we give our lives to Jesus, we ask him to come into our hearts and take residency there. We can not allow it to get filled up with hurt, unforgiveness, etc. The more negativity we allow in, the less we’re allowing Jesus to change our hearts. We must watch how we speak over our lives, over our children, and every situation we face. When we are negative or hurtful, we are filling our hearts with doubt and anger. But when we are positive, patient, and kind, we are filling our hearts with faith and trust in God. Even over the small things, we need God’s faith and patience. Whether it’s for our children to turn from things they are doing, or just for them to stop giving you an attitude. If our hearts are filled with anger and not love, there is no faith and there is no patience.
I want to encourage you today to spend time in God’s word. Studying how our Heavenly Father has been so patient and kind with us and how we can implement that into our lives. Take that extra step and try to be a little mindful of what you say and how you say it. Learn to be humble and admit and ask for forgiveness when you are wrong. Big or small.
I pray Lord that you will help us all as parents to be slow to speak, quick to listen, and slow to get angry. Lord, I ask that you would help fill us with your patience, kindness, and forgiveness. Show us the way, Lord. Show us how to parent our children the way you want us to. Reveal to us if there are things we should be doing or saying, and if there are things that we are doing or saying that we shouldn’t be. Help us to walk in your footsteps, the perfect Heavenly Father. Thank you, Lord, for being our greatest example. In Jesus name, Amen!