A Message From a Stranger

Proverbs 22:6

Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it. (RSV)

Thought for the Day:  God helps us teach our children

Recently my family dined at a restaurant in our town. Our youngest son was acting up quite a bit and my husband and I had to stop our conversation often to talk to him about his behavior. From the beginning of the meal, we had to take things away from him, ask him to say “Yes Sir” or “Yes Mam”, to repeat his order to the server in a more polite way, and to even take him away from the situation for a moment after he pushed his plate aggressively into drinks. As happens often, we felt people watching.

Toward the end of our meal, a sweet lady who had been sitting at the table across from us turned in her seat to face our son. She said, “Young man, I know a little boy who is loved very much by his parents. Do you know who that little boy is?”   He said, “No mam, who?”   She said, “You!” He looked surprised and then listened. “Do you know how I know your parents love you?” the lady asked. He said, “No mam”. She said, “Because they discipline you and teach you how you are to act.” The conversation went on for a few minutes with Jonathan listening intently to the lady. At one point, he turned to his brother and called out, “YahYah (the name he calls his brother), are you hearing this?!”, to which we laughed. He quickly passed on the message the lady was speaking to him to involve his brother. It was as if he was trying to share her message with him.

My husband and I sensed that someone understood what we were going through and the words that stranger spoke to our child that day were words that he needed to hear. We needed to feel assured that we were doing something right. I believe God placed those words in her mind to speak to our child because she said it in such a loving way and in a way a four year old could understand.

Prayer:   God, thank you for sending strangers to us to help us in communicating with our children. You are amazing, God, which is so evident when we see your messages come from unexpected people. Amen.

Prayer Focus: THOSE WITH ACTIVE CHILDREN

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