We have a silly little game that we play around here called ‘I Love You More’. It started innocently enough with me telling my grandboy that I loved him. He answered back with, “No, I love you!” Of course my response was, “I love you more!” His response was, “No, I love you more!” After a few more rounds of those words we then added, “I love you more than ice cream.” Or whatever other ridiculous thing we could think up. This little back and forth goes on and on with total abandon until we are both lost in a fit of giggles.
Love is such a gift that we can give our kiddos. It provides security to them in the darkest of days. It really doesn’t take much time, money or effort to instill this valuable resource in our children. Over on the Tommy Nelson blog this month we have an article entitled, 5 Ways To Show Your Kids Love Today. The points of that article are as follows:
1. Use Your Words. Open up your mouth and simply tell your child that they are loved. Let them know that they are loved simply because they are your child. Stick a note in their lunch box. Put a post-it on their mirror. If they are older and driving, put a note in their car or just send them a text. There is nothing more heartbreaking than hearing an adult say that they never heard their parent tell them they loved them. Don’t be that parent. Say it to them over and over until it is so ingrained that as teenagers they roll their eyes and say, “I know, I know, you love me.” Trust me, deep down they crave it.
2. Do Something For Them. We all have dreaded chores that must be done. Whatever that task may be for your child go help them do it, just because. It is perfect because they are held captive with the duty so you can use that time to communicate to them that they are valued and loved. Even if it is just joining them in making their bed and picking up their room, you are still showing them that you desire to be in their presence and that what they are doing matters.
3. Give Them Something. Gifts don’t have to be expensive or big. What if you picked up a cute new pair of earrings for your daughter while you were buying groceries at the supercenter? For my boys an inexpensive pocket sized car will light up their faces. Just knowing that your parent thought of you while they were away conveys a sense of love and security.
4. Do Something With Them. Spending one on one time with each of your kids is priceless. For little ones, an ice cream cone at McDonald’s is magical. As they get older try a weeknight dinner and movie or maybe a window shopping trip to the mall. Just having your undivided attention lets your child know that you love them and are willing to set aside time just for them.
5. Give Them A Hug. This isn’t so hard when they are little, although I did have one that just was not a cuddler but I still pulled him in my lap and held him and told him he was loved. Physically hugging your teenager is just as important as hugging your toddler. If they are typical they will shrink away from it, but don’t let that stop you! A good backrub or back scratch, a squeeze of the hand, a ruffle of the hair, it all goes a long way in conveying your love and affection towards your child.
While it is important that our kids grow up knowing we love them, knowing that God loves them is even more important. In fact our love for them only matters during their physical lifetime, but the love of God has an eternal impact.
One of the biggest blessings in life is introducing your child to the Father. It is such an important duty of ours as parents that the Bible says in Deuteronomy 11:18-19,
“Impress these words of Mine on your hearts and souls, . . . Teach them to your children, talking about them when you sit in your house and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.”Are you doing that? We encourage you today to in some way not only tell your children that you love them but that the Father loves them. Love is a powerful thing . . . pass it on!
We’ve come across an adorable little bedtime prayer book from Tommy Nelson that was written by Amanda Lamb. It is called I Love You To God And Back. We loved this sweet little book so much that we want to give a copy of it to one of our readers. Our prayer is that it will be a blessing to you as you teach your children that not only do you love them, but God loves them.