Thursday, 20 October 2011

Looking outside our family

I read a blog post a few weeks ago discussing whether Mummies of young kids are superficial or narrow in their perspective. I wrote a comment in the discussion & started thinking more about our family.

I love spending time with my kids, I love teaching them things, I love making them things, I love blogging about the things that we do. I spend lots of time thinking about things we can do together. But, I wonder what my example is teaching our kids? When I choose to use most of my time serving our family, what do they learn about my priorities? I don't want our kids to grow up thinking that our family is the centre of the universe.


If anyone has material possessions and sees his brother in need but has no pity on him, how can the love of God be in him? Dear children, let us not love with words or tongue but with actions and in truth. (1 John 3:17-18)

Mr Sociable has a real heart for those in need. He prayed earnestly for flood victims in Queensland and sent some of the money from his money box. He still talks about the earthquake victims from Japan and New Zealand. He often prays for the homeless people who live in Central Park, New York.

I've been trying to encourage his passion by teaching him about others who are in need & giving him concrete things that we can do. 

Last week, I paraphrased a few articles from the Compassion magazine while we were sitting at the dinner table. I'm ashamed to admit that I often put this magazine straight into the recycling - but it was great to read and talk about people God is helping.

This week, we wrote a letter to one of our sponsor children, Noel. I wrote the letter, Mr Sociable did a drawing of Mummy and Daddy at the beach. Mr Fun mostly scribbled - but he really wanted to join in!

Today, we packed a box for Operation Christmas Child. Mr Sociable was really excited to pack a Christmas present for another boy who was 3-4 (although he did find it a bit difficult to accept that he wasn't receiving any presents today - we were only packing a gift for someone else!).

Painting some wrapping paper
Filling the box with gifts
Ready to drop off at a collection point
My next plan is to introduce the idea of "useful" Christmas gifts. I often give these to family/friends at Christmas time. This year, I would love Mr Sociable to help us choose some gifts for people.

TEAR Useful Gift Catalogue
I also like this idea of making up "care" packages for homeless people, to give to people as we walk through the city - but we haven't done it yet!

I know a lot of these ideas are about people in need in the broader/global community. I am still thinking through how I can serve people in my local/church community, while looking after small kids. It was much easier pre-kids to serve other people (helping people to pack & clean for moving, making meals for people, driving people around, etc.)!!

I'd love to hear your ideas! How do you serve people outside your family? How do you teach your kids about being generous with their time and material wealth?

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