Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Copycat kids and what that says about us as parents

`Follow Me...' -- Jesus
I'm not sure how it started, or why, but Judah, our resident 4-year-old, started this practice of whispering when he wants to tell one of us something really, really important. He will get up close to you and put his hand between your ear and his mouth and whisper so no one else can hear. Usually it's something like, "Can I have chocolate milk?" Or, "Can I play a video game?"

I'm guessing he's hoping that whoever he whispers that to will assent to his request, but if he said it loudly someone within earshot might remember that he just had chocolate milk or that it's not video game day -- for him those fall on Wednesdays and Saturdays -- and pull the plug on his request.

What's interesting is that Seth has noticed this whispering trend and so he is starting to whisper. Except at 3 years old he doesn't quite understand the mechanics or gist of it. So it's pretty much whatever is on his mind he'll whisper. Whether it's watching Sprout, or if he can have a sandwich, or watch a show on "Neckfliz" -- technically it's Netflix but we like the kiddieized version of Neckfliz better and that's pretty much how it's known in the Sabo house -- or whatever else is on his mind.

It's an interesting study in copying. The younger sees the older do something and follows suit. We see it all the time in this house and I'm sure you do as well.

But here's the thing. The whispering is just a small, innocent thing. Harmless and entertaining and actually kind of fun. I smile when I see one of the little boys whispering a request to someone else.

What are the big things kids are copying?

I was thinking about this just this morning when I was reading in the book of Matthew. It's in Matthew 8:18-22 where Jesus is talking about the cost of discipleship. To one person he said how He was essentially homeless, living a life of faith. Another wanted to go spend time with his father and care for him to his death -- in other words he didn't want to follow Jesus quite yet -- and Jesus responded that the time to follow Him is now.

Our kids are watching us all the time. They are watching what's important to us and copying that.

What are we as parents putting ahead of following Jesus? How are we hindering developing faith in our children and showing them that the most important thing we can do is make Jesus Christ not only our Savior, but our Lord?

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