THINK ABOUT IT
By Kellie Tipton
I was asked one Sunday by a mom at church as to how I handled sibling issues such as fighting and bickering with my children. She didn't want to handle it the way she always had, she wanted something more. Sibling rivalry is a normal occurrence in families but she didn’t want to give into normal. It brought me back to one morning when my children were young and I was noticing how they were being very ugly to each other.
Sometimes it was just a little jab but then I could see it building as feelings were hurt and sides were taken. I was taking care of some things around the house and I began to pray about it. What would be the most effective way to handle it not just for the moment, but for the future?
I started going down the list of what my children were reading, watching and who had they been around recently. Sometimes it can be they have not been home and there just always seems to be a time of readjusting when they come home whether it be a friends house or grandma and grandpa’s house. I always called it a “debriefing” ha! Sometimes it is the influences and sometimes irritation is just contagious!
I started being intentional about specific books we would read together or movies that encouraged a good sibling relationship. Many times it was older films or true stories of missionaries and martyrs. I would see an almost immediate difference in those times where the family relationship was being influenced through those stories. Whether fiction or non-fiction it was intended to bring out what is true and most important in the big picture of life. It brought out a clarity in my children's minds and mine.
Apostle Paul says in Philippians 4:8 “Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable — if anything is excellent or praiseworthy — think about such things and the God of peace will be with you.”
Paul is talking to the Philippian Christians and encouraging them to guard their hearts, their minds, their relationships and keep what is truth before them. What we allow our minds to think on matters and that goes for our children as well!
What do you find yourself thinking on? It might be time to go down that list.