Gary's blog for couples and parents plus resources for individuals, leaders and churches.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Things Worth Re-Gifting At Your House

OK, so we've all done it. We've taken a gift given to us by someone else that we really didn't want and then passed it on to someone else later, right?  If we're honest, yes, that was a kind of cheap and lazy move for the most part.

However, there are some things we have been given in life that we would be wise to pass on, especially to our kids, that they can take with them as well.  And yet, some of us aren't terribly intentional about that sort of re-gifting  so think about some of the following challenges.

First of all, be sure to re-gift your faith. That would seem obvious if you are a fairly religious, church-going family but it's not. Many people expect the church or Christian school to do the bulk of their modeling and teaching about what it means to follow Christ. And yet the Bible clearly suggests that parents are to be the principle teachers when it comes to helping our kids know, love and serve God.  See the Old Testament, the book of Deuteronomy, chapter 6.

Second, re-gift the importance of hard work. We live in an entitlement culture where so many comforts and things to make life easier are at our fingertips all the time. Many in our educational systems want to merely level the playing field and make sure that no one feels bad or loses. But in reality anything that's good or worth having will require diligence and sacrifice. Teach and model that kind of ethic in your home. Make sure children and teens appropriately help with chores and family needs even if they're active in school and extracurricular activities.

Third, re-gift the specialness of family. We only get so much time with each other. Make sure it's not all taken up with personal activities, lessons, games and media. Those things all have their place but we need to have time to just enjoy each other and learn to love better. Take inventory on this one, slow down and don't pre-program every moment of your family's life.When's the last time you were all together just to have fun, for a vacation, or to do something truly spontaneous?

Finally, re-gift a thankful heart.  While we may seem to have much or little we're all wonderfully blessed.  Even in the middle of hardship there's much to be thankful for.  Model that you don't always need one more, or the new version, or the same thing they have next door to be happy.  Learn to make do a little more and to wait until next year some of the time. Regularly ask your spouse and kids to share something they are thankful for and then tell God about those things.

Some gifts are worth wrapping up and passing along even if you've seen them before.  I've shared a few.  What are your ideas?
Gary Sinclair Writer | Speaker | Leader

Gary is currently a consultant, teacher, speaker and chaplain providing resources for families, leaders and churches.

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