“It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs” (1 Corinthians 13:5).
When I was a little girl, my mother took a lot of time to teach me to be polite and have good manners, especially with adult guests. This is very important, but I think sometimes we adults forget to be courteous to children.
How many of us want our children to listen to us when we speak to them? Sometimes I make my children look at me before I tell them what is on my mind. I want to make sure they are paying attention to what I say.
On the other hand, are we careful to listen politely and not let our minds wander when our children talk to us?
Are we kind to our children’s friends? Are we gentle with the people who are important to them? Do we respect our children’s possessions? Do we ask them before we borrow something?
Do we compliment our children when they do something well?
Treating our own children with good manners and courtesy helps them to know that they are worth something both to us and to God. It shows we respect them, and they in turn will respect themselves.
If we are courteous to our children, it gives them confidence to do the right thing.
Never be rude—even to your own children. Your politeness will pay off. Being rude is not part of the character of someone who loves.
Kimberly Snider is a missionary to the Philippines.
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Copyright (c) 2003 Women’s Ministries of the Assemblies of God.