My last post dealt with the importance of teaching our children to be kind. You can read it here.
I view performing acts of kindness as putting feet to LOVE. Love needs feet and hands and a voice to make it an action.
I’ve been asking friends for several months about ways that they and their children show kindness. I added our family’s ideas, and came up with a list of 25 family friendly way to show kindness.
We need to remember that the only normal our young children know, is what they see in their own homes. If they grow up participating in acts of kindness, it becomes a part of who they are.
Here are 25 easy, family friendly ways to show kindness:
1. Show affection to someone. Hug them. Pat or hold their hand.
2. Intentionally listen to someone who needs to talk.
3. Talk to / befriend someone new in preschool, Sunday school, school, work, or in the neighborhood.
4. Hold the door open for someone.
5. Give someone something that has brought you joy. (A favorite book, piece of clothing, toy, or any other favorite)
6. As you drive in the car with your children, pray together for the person in the car in front or back of your car. Just a general prayer for their blessing etc.
7. Deliver a flower in a simple vase or a cookie to an elderly or ill person.
8. Send someone who might need a lift, a funny saying, comic strip, pun or joke.
9.Tell someone that you are grateful for something that they’ve done for you or your family.
10. Teach your children the importance of asking for forgiveness. Walk them through the steps of forgiving someone if needed.
11. Teach your children the importance of apologizing if they have wronged someone. Walk them through it.
12. Volunteer at least once a year to help the less fortunate. Donate coats, clothing, or toys to a shelter, visit the elderly, help with Meals on Wheels, make a meal for a Ronald McDonald or Hospice facility, or any other ‘fit’ for your family.
13. Don’t complain, argue, or whine for an entire day. Phil. 2:14
14. Encourage someone through words of affirmation, or a heartfelt compliment.
15. Call, text, or email someone you’re thinking about to tell them that you’re thinking about them. Ask if you could join them in prayer for something.
16. Smile at people.
17. Offer to shop for someone who would be blessed by it.
18. Drive with kindness in mind. Yelling at other drivers teaches your children to do the same.
19. Offer to give someone your place in line.
20. Pray as a family for a situation outside of your community, that you read or hear about on the news.
21. Save coins over an extended amount of time to donate to a group, chosen and agreed upon by the family.
22. Offer to babysit for someone.
23. Make or donate things to a children’s hospital, hospice, or an animal shelter.
24. Bless a sibling or other family member by secretly doing one of their chores or making their day easier.
25. Pray, as a family, and ask God what He wants you to do TODAY to show someone kindness.
I’d LOVE to read how YOU teach your children to be kind!
It’s been a fascinating study.
Kindness is a fruit of the Spirit. We are to exhibit it.
Do we want our children to be kind? Of course.
Do we talk to them about it? I didn’t. I should have talked about it a lot. I should have asked them every day something like this, “Hi Ben, were you kind today? Can you tell me about something that you did that was kind.?”
Or, “Anya, was anyone kind to you today?”
Or, “Sarena, do you have plans to be kind today?”
Those type of questions can spark discussions about being kind. From that we could role-play. We could even plan ways to be kind to family members, friends and even strangers.
Here is just one verse, of many, that our children could memorize: 1 Thessalonians.5:15
15 See that none of you repays evil for evil, but always seek to be kind to one another and to all.
I will share 25 family friendly ways to show kindness in the next post.
How do you teach your children to be kind?
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