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One thing most of us we want to pass on to our children is a legacy. We want them to carry on something from us into the rest of the world which reflects who we are. Most of the time, they will carry our example out into the world regardless of our intentions for it to be a positive one. So maybe we should think a bit more about what we actually show our children versus what we tell them; given the following backwards things many of us are guilty of:
1. Tell kids Christmas is not about gifts and presents, yet pay outrages prices, wait in ridiculously long lines and even go into debt for those “unimportant” gifts.
2. Regularly use foul language, but turn around and punish them for the same.
3. Tell our kids they are out of control if they have a tantrum when they do not get their way, yet when things do not go as we would like we raise all hell.
4. Tell our kids to be grateful and not complain about the food we prepare for them, but go off on the waiter if one item on our plate is not like we wanted.
5. Tell kids not to be lazy, but have them grab the remote from the other side of the room for us.
6. Spank or whoop them for……..hitting someone.
7. Tell them they spend too much time on tv, video games, etc…, but are constantly on smart phones, laptops and tablets ourselves.
8. Tell them they need to eat vegetables and to get active, but they can clearly see we have been packing on the pounds and nearly pass out from taking a flight of stairs.
9. Tell little boys to respect women as we consume movies, music videos and music featuring women as sets of body parts we do not care to hear speak.
10. Tell them they should not smoke or drink, but keep a constant supply in the house for ourselves.
11. Tell little girls we want them to find a man who truly loves and cares about them, but the first thing we want to know about him is how much he makes.
12. Tell kids school is about more than money, but we only steer them towards the “lucrative” fields.
13. Tell them not to call people names, but they learned every one of them from us.
14. Tell them to follow Jesus, but we ourselves show them we do not care enough to follow his advice and example in our own lives.
15. Tell them they need to respect authority figures despite hearing us defame disliked bosses and elected leaders on a regular basis.
We must be the legacy we want our children to follow. Good or bad, they will usually follow in our footsteps; despite seeing we were full of it. So how about we dispense with the charade and be a model of the kind of person we want them to be. We are merely lying to ourselves when we believe they will get there without us sacrificing our vices, guilty pleasures and shortcomings for their sakes. The best gift we could ever give our children is a good example. Their path will be much easier when they have already seen someone else walk it.
By Corey Dorsey