Saturday, April 21, 2012

Considerate Blessings

Wow, it is just amazing how fast this past week of Spring Break went! 

Our weather was dry and pleasantly warm for a change! Our time during Spring Break was spent catching up on sleep, hanging out with friends, sleepovers, trips to the mall with friends, outside adventures with our dog Buddy, Lego building and quality time with each other! What a blessing to have this kind of a week with our happy, healthy family. 

Photo booth at the mall!

Building with Legos.

"The Bat Cave"

One of the things we are working on as a family in our home is being considerate of each other. This does not apply to only when we want something, but all of the time. No matter how we feel, and no matter how much time we may or may not have. Why is this so important?

In Philippians 2 it says to "Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others." This still doesn't answer the question of "why." Why should we be considerate of the interests of others and value others above ourselves? The answer, "because you are supposed to" just doesn't cut it in our family. The Lord created very inquisitive minds in our family and it is up to us parents to continuously point our children to the cross with clear explanations of "why". It's exhausting sometimes, but totally worth it in the end! 

The best answer we could come up with is basically because being considerate is a way of demonstrating the love we have for each other. Most importantly, being considerate is a good reflection of Jesus being at work in our lives. In Deuteronomy 6 it says, "These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up."

When discussing this issue with a friend recently, she confessed that this issue was a major ongoing problem in her family. She said it was rare if someone thought of anyone else's feelings or schedule when making plans to do something. She and I decided to tackle this issue by covering it with a lot of prayer and seeking the Lord for wisdom on how to best permanently install being considerate in each of our family members hearts. Love covers a multitude of things, including being considerate. 

How are we going to approach being considerate when we have all been born as selfish creatures? With a lot of prayer and with tons of discussion. Our family has dinner together every night at the kitchen table and it is the perfect time to discuss the days progress of our project of becoming considerate. Also, talking through how we feel when things are done without being considerate is a good tool as well. 

I've been guilty of not conveying my expectations to my family. I haven't spelled things our for them. My expectations are cleverly disguised in my head most of the time! Prayerfully, this will change and we can all learn to communicate what we expect from each other and become more considerate in the process. No one likes a guessing game. No one wants to go through life wondering what would or would not be the right action to take within their family. 

Be considerate. Pray.