I was talking to a friend recently who shared with me that her 7 year old son complains that she never plays with him. She said, “I spend a lot of time with him. I sit in the bathroom while he bathes, I sit with him while he does homework, I read to him, he reads to me.” That sounds commedable doesn’t it? I would be happy if I did I those things. We all have limited time with the myriad obligations of homeschooling and homemaking responsibilities and the thought of carving out more time seems impossible.
But you know what a person with wisdom said to her when she mentioned it to them? “Those are all motherly things. You need to do things with him.” Wow. That hit me between the eyes when I heard that.
Well because I’ve noticed my own 7 year old becoming a little too independent and cool towards me. And I’ve been thinking… “Elisabeth, you need to tie strings of fellowship here. You need to work on your relationship with him.”
Yes, I take care of all of his physical needs. Wash his clothes, prepare his meals, hug & kiss him at night but am I meeting his need for friendship? Does he know I like him?
Have you ever asked your husband, “Do I love you?”
I did and he responded with “Yes.”
I then asked “Do I like you?”
He said, “Sometimes.”
I was floored because the book I was reading at the time said that in many instances this is the case. Husbands know their wives love them because of how their wives care for them but they don’t see love as being the same as liking them.
I believe the same applies to our children. Do they know we like them? Somehow we must convey our appreciation for them, these little bundles of sweetness & orneriness.
I don’t think it’s complicated but it will take yours and my time. Simple ways such as: Being friendly with them and listening to them (this can be a hard one if they tend to tell you everything), doing activities with them or sometimes even just watching them. Telling them you like them. This is relationship building and all the time and effort we put into tying strings of fellowship with our children will not go unrewarded.
I’m the first to admit that it’s hard to change our ways but for the sake of our children we must commit ourselves. We must realize the importance of it. We must make time. Can we spare even 15 minutes of our day and devote it to these precious charges God has given us? If we are faithful in due season we shall reap. We will have a relationship and our children will know that we really do enjoy being with them – that we like them.
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