Friday, February 10, 2012

Words Kids Need to Hear

I've been people watching at my son's basketball practices. Twice a week is just too tempting not to observe. This past week was disturbing. I watched as a mom scowled and interrogated her son for over 30 minutes. I could't hear what she was saying, but I could see it all. Her brow was crinkled, lips pursed, and she had "that look" in her eyes. You know that look us moms can get. By the end of practice, even I was afraid to glance her way. What troubled me was her son's countenance. His face was downcast, shoulders drooped, and eyes sad...pitifully sad.

I have no idea what had happened. For all I know he could have gotten in trouble at school, had a bad attitude, failed a test or worse. I won't judge based on looks, but the whole incident did remind me of a book I read a few years ago called Words Kids Need to Hear by David Staal.

The author argues that kids need to hear things like:
I believe in you.
You can count on me.
I treasure you. (My friend Brandee just wrote about this.)
I'm sorry, please forgive me.
I love you.

God gave us a great example when He said "this is my son whom I love; with him I am well pleased.” (Matthew 3:17)

Words are powerful. Words matter. My husband Brian says that all the time.

Today I am practicing the "I will be there for you" as my weak 10 year old lays on the couch recovering from a virus. When he is sick, he wants someone to be with him even if just to sit beside him while he watches TV. Tonight I will have to practice the "I'm sorry, please forgive me" to my other son. I was supposed to get a book for him but forgot because of the 10 year old being sick.

Kids need to feel special and cherished, not because of any skill or physical appearance, but just because they are kids and kids are worth treasuring.

When was the last time you told a child "I believe in you" or "I treasure you"?

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