“You obey the law of Christ when you offer each other a helping hand.” (CEV) Galatians 6:2
I recently read about someone who disappointedly realized their mom’s praise for being the best potato peeler in the country was only to encourage them to peel the potatoes for dinner. While that example makes us chuckle, our words do carry tremendous weight in the lives of our kids. Do our words encourage them to help their friends when they are in need? Do they show them that it is okay to ask others for help? Here are some suggestions for ways we can do that:
Our kids are watching. Show them what it means to carry others’ burdens. Maybe bring dinner to a family who is going through a hard time, and together as a family pray for them. The next time you help your kids with something, you could even teach them how to do it so that they are able to help others.
Point out strengths
Build them up by pointing out their strengths:
"You give the best hugs."
"You always know just what song I need to hear."
"Your jokes bring me so much joy."
As you praise them for their strengths, they begin to be more confident in their ability to use those strengths to help others.
Ask for help
Give your kids opportunities to help you. Ask for help bringing the groceries in or putting away laundry or hanging a picture. Show them that they are able to help and that it is okay to allow other people to help you.
Teaching our kids to be good helpers can also include helping with spiritual things—give them opportunities to read the Bible or pray after dinnertime. Thankfully, God gives us the patience and insight we need as we help our kids learn about their strengths and how to use them well. As you go through the ups and downs of raising your kids, may God continue to provide people in your life who help you when you are in need.
Want to do a deep dive? Check out Family Fire's article Caring for One Another