“Do” Instead of “Tell”

FB1 picI saw this great quote the other day on Facebook and just had to snag it.  It’s one of those statements that when you really come to grips behind the truth of it…well, it can be a little scary.

You see, I’m great at offering advice.  You will never find this mom lacking in her willingness to give an opinion, make a suggestion or outright declare what should be done.

So while I might do well in this area, it’s a little more humbling to think about the following my example part.  Because in my humanness, well, there are things I do that I certainly wouldn’t want my children to do.

Of all my three children, my daughter is the most like me.  In many ways she reminds me of the “younger” me…both in age and spiritual maturity.  She is pretty blunt, strong-willed and opinionated.  She doesn’t take much stuff from anyone.

Now the truth is that I am still those things…only not quite as rough around the edges as I used to be.  There is still work to be done, don’t get me wrong.  God is still chiseling away at me.  But it’s definitely raised an awareness within to remember that she is watching me.

Sure, once-in-a-while she might actually listen to me.  But more than anything, she is looking to my example.

Hmmm.  That reminds me of another saying I snagged from Facebook.  FB1 pic

As much as I value that statement, doing it the way I said from the beginning—the reality is that my words are trumped by my actions.  You know the old saying, “actions speak louder than words.”  Well that’s true.

Now that my children are older, they will call me out when my words aren’t aligning with my doing.  One of the best examples I can give you are the two children who have learned to drive.

Yeah, try telling your child to drive the speed limit when they remind you of how many times you don’t do the same.  Or when making a turn, staying in the left lane instead of sliding over to the right.

Whatever I want my children to do, I must be doing…not telling.  In fact, my words are more likely to fall on deaf ears.  It is the example I set that will make the greatest impact in their lives.

© 2012, Stephanie Romero

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