Thursday, January 3, 2008

Reaching our childrens hearts, part 2

I want to share an excerpt from the book "Don't Make Me Count to Three" by Ginger Plowman. This is actually a quote in the book from Ted Tripp but I really wanted to share it with you. This is in regards to when two children are fighting over one toy and the parent's usual response of "who had it first?".

"This response misses heart issues. "Who had it first?" is an issue of justice. Justice operates in the favor of the child who has the quicker draw in getting the toy to begin with. If we look at this situation in terms of the heart, the issues change. Both children are displaying hardness of heart. Both are being selfish. Both children are saying, "I don't care about your happiness. I am only concerned about myself. I want this toy. I will have it and be happy regardless of what that means to you." In terms of issues of the heart, you have two sinning children. Two children preferring themselves before the other. Two children who are breaking God's law."

Ginger addresses this issue and discusses how she prayed and asked God for direction in this situation and she encourages her readers to do the same. Here is the plan she came up with: "We wanted a solution that would be easy for them to understand and put into practice on their own. So, we came up with the rule that it is not only selfish but it is rude to take or even ask for something that someone else has until that person is obviously through with it." She compares this to a situation of several adults visiting and one being handed a set of pictures to look at, now even though another adult had not seen the pictures and wanted to look at them, they would wait patiently until the first adult was finished with the pictures before asking for them. It would be rude to ask them for the pictures before they were finished looking for themselves.

I really like how she decided to handle the above situation, it eliminates the problem of having two children sinning and then trying to deal with both of their heart issues.

What do you think?



  1. My daughters always have had a debate over the front seat of the van, every time we would go somewhere. I would always play referee and try to decide whos turn it was or some sort of peace about it.Every time that my middle daughter was not in the front seat she would start explaing to me how I had made a mistake or how she should get to be there again because she had done more work than her sister and on and on and on until she got on everyones nerves.Finnaly I told them that they both were being very selfish and told them both to get in the back seat.I talked all the way to town about the sin of putting ourself before others. Jesus first, Others second, and Yourself last equals JOY.They have known this for a long time. I told them that they were having so much trouble with this front seat issue because they were putting themselvs fist and that was not Christian. Oh my, did they feel bad. They were all sad and downhearted. I told them that I was not going to hear any more debating about it nor was I going to keep record of whos turn it was and they had better get rid of the selfishness,and pray for forgiveness.
    It is amazing how that talk brought peace. They now are so kind about who gets the front seat. No more debating about it.

    I think that teaching children about the sin of selfishness and how it hurts Jesus will most times bring children to realize what is the right thing to do.This is what we parents need to do instead of keeping score of who gets it now.Some times it is fine to do the deciding or keeping score of whos turn it is but not if the child is showing selfishness.

    I have enjoyed this post, thanks for sharing it.
    maa's mom

  2. RichlyBlessedMomof4January 8, 2008 at 10:38 AM

    Once again you have brought many thoughts for me to ponder, dear sister!
    Thank you. I will be praying about these things and how God can use them for us!!!
    Excellent Post!
    Be blessed.

  3. Maa's mom, I like the way you handled the situation about the front seat, thank you for sharing it with us. Richlyblessedmomof4, I am glad to give you some things to ponder :)