I've contemplated whether I get bent out of shape too easily over things that are natural for kids to do. Then I was reading from I John 4:7,8 which says, "Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, for God is love." This loving business sounds mighty important, and showing kindness is an act of love.
Continuing on in I John 4: 9, 10 it says, "This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins." God gave us the ultimate act of kindness when through his love he sent Jesus into this world to take the punishment for our sin. Jesus willingly gave up his desires to make our lives worth living. He thought of us over himself.
In order for our children to become like Christ, they too must become selfless. That definitely is not natural. It is not human nature. In I John 4:11, 12 John continues to plead with his readers, "Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us." By teaching my children to exhibit love and kindness, I am guiding them towards choosing the path of completeness and wholeness made possible through Christ in them.
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It is natural to choose self. Perhaps that's why John spends so much time telling us that we must love. He says it over and over. We are hard-headed, self-willed people. We need things enforced and re-enforced so we get the message. Thus I will not give up in teaching my children to show kindness and love. I will say it over and over. And I will continue to have them practice showing kindness to each other. After all, what is natural is not always better.