On Thursday, I started this series about service. Today’s post is a follow-up to that.
How do we teach our children about community service? Serving others is not the natural inclination. So how do we teach selfish people to serve others?
By example. We can’t expect our children to do something we ourselves are not doing.
So what does that mean? It means our children are watching. And when we take a bagged lunch to the homeless man in our neighborhood, our children learn about serving others. They especially learn about serving people who cannot serve us back. They learn when they watch their daddy paint a widow’s house and when they watch momma make dinner for another family. When we serve food at a funeral and when we carry groceries in for a neighbor, our children are watching. When we wipe down tables after a church dinner and when we set up for Vacation Bible School, our children see us.
They watch the big things and the little things — when we go visit somebody in prison and when I pour a bowl of cereal and milk for my husband when his blood sugar is low. They know if we’re serving publicly for people to notice or if we also serve quietly in the ways nobody notices.
I believe the best way to teach our children about service is to show them by example.
Next up — practical things we can do with our children to serve others.