Tag Archive - character

“I’m not that nice.”

Little Billy was only three years old. It was nighttime, and we were going through our routine. First he had a fun, relaxing bubble-bath. Brushing teeth was next, then… time for a snuggly story. Prayer together–the last thing on the agenda.  I was praying for him:  “Thank you, Lord, that Billy is so kind to his brothers and sisters. Thank you that he loves them and shares with them.”

“No, Mom!” he stopped me.  “I’m not that nice!  Don’t say all those good things about me.” Continue Reading…

Living Yes! Saying No

Patrick was four and Anna was six; they were playing outside on the swingset. I stopped to look out the window just to check on them. At that moment, the next-door neighbor Josh, who was seven, came over to join the fun. They were going up the ladder and down the slide over and over. Isn’t it amazing how children enjoy repetition without boredom?

Patrick had his hands on the rail to climb up, when Josh came running around for another turn. He grabbed Patrick’s arm and started to pull him away from the ladder. Patrick hung on. Josh pulled again. Patrick hung on. Josh was pulling one more time when Patrick turned his head toward Josh and yelled “NO-O-O!” in Josh’s face. Josh backed up a full step while Patrick went up the ladder.

As a young dad I was proud of my son for taking a stand.

As our children grow up they must learn to say NO to many things: to bullies, to temptation, to fear. How do we build that into them? Continue Reading…

I Can Make the Rules for my Toothbrush

On November 11, 1995, as we were completing the bedtime ritual, three year old Jean-Luc was putting his toothbrush away in the wrong place. When I (Trish) said something to him about it, he said, “It’s my toothbrush, and I can make the rules for it.” Continue Reading…

Allow Your Kids to Struggle

Monday we attended the climbing of Herndon. Herndon is a 26 foot monument located in front of the chapel at the Naval Academy. It is the final rite of passage for the plebe (freshman) year at the academy. At 1:30 Monday afternoon over 1000 plebes raced to the base of Herndon, yelling and screaming. They were confident, they were ready, they were a little naïve. Continue Reading…

When Trouble Comes

Neal was a marine in Iraq during Desert Storm. He and his platoon served as an outpost searching for enemy movement or activity of any kind. On one very ordinary day, they were suddenly being shelled by enemy mortars. The spies had been spied. Ordinary became intensity in a moment. Continue Reading…

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