12 Days of Christmas Parenting
It’s hard to believe that Christmas is right around the corner! It seems like we just celebrated Thanksgiving a few days ago. This time last year, I posted a holiday blog tour called: “The 12 Days of Christmas Parenting” on the blogs some of my favorite people. This year, I’ll be posting those articles on my blog for those who either missed it last year – or need a reminder for some practical ways to lead your kids during this busy season!
I’ll share tips for parents on how to navigate the difficult traps of the holidays, and create moments with life long impact. We’ll talk about 12 ideas to combat ingratitude, selfishness and impatience — and encourage generosity in your children, especially through the holidays.
Today’s post originally appeared on Daniel Decker’s blog. Daniel is the president of Higher Level Group, Inc., who works with authors, professional speakers and organizations. Daniel helps clients expand their influence. He and his wife are proud parents of 2 amazing girls. You can follow Daniel on Twitter here.
Growing Kindness in Your Kids at Christmas
Kindness. Most of us would never use the word if it weren’t for church on Sunday, where we have to talk about it because it’s in the Bible. We just don’t hear the word in everyday conversation. That’s sad. It’s not only a rare commodity; it may be an endangered species.
So how do we cultivate kindness in our homes at Christmas?
Plan a trip to the shopping mall this week, but not to shop. Walk together as a family and do this little exercise. As you walk by the frantic shoppers, look into their eyes and smile. As you do, ask God to reveal to you what they might need; where they might be hurting. You’ll be amazed at how much you can read on a face. Loneliness. Anxiety. Depression. Once you pass by, pray for what comes to mind. You might pray: “God, those older folks looked lonely. Be their companion today, Lord, and if they don’t know You personally, reveal Yourself to them.” Or, “God, those young people look angry. God, give them peace, and if they don’t know You, reveal yourself to them.”
I’ve done this exercise with guys that I mentor and it always ignites our hearts. We suddenly see people differently — not so much as shoppers who are in our way, but as souls who have hurts and battles. It almost always ignites kindness. Once you’ve meandered through the mall, have a conversation and talk about what you saw. Then, decide on one person (or group) that were especially memorable, and do something for them. It may be as little as buying them a Starbucks coffee or a Coke. But — step out and show kindness. You may be amazed at how viral it can be.
“And if you have a gift for showing kindness to others, do it gladly.” (Romans 12:8)
What can you do to grow kindness in your kids this Christmas?