So yes I know I am way behind in my blogging. I am in the process of reorganizing my life so stay tuned. Here is my recent article for the amazing digital magazine Take Root and Write:
Have you ever been in a store and seen a child throwing a tantrum? Have you ever seen one get so out of control over nonsense, and it seems their parents are not going to do a darn thing so you want to go over there and take care of it yourself? I have! I bet you're not surprised I would say that. Manner-less kids drive me nuts! That might not be a very Christian thing to say but it's true.
This last weekend I went to a graduation full of manner-less kids. I know it is a sign of the times but that does not excuse the behavior or make it any better. When I was a kid, if you were at a wedding, funeral, graduation, or even church, and you were being loud, you were taken outside. Period. The adult you were with did not sit there and tell you to be quiet a hundred times. You were taken out, and if you made a scene out the door you were spanked. It was not even necessarily by your own parent either!
This graduation ceremony was an important day for those who were receiving their diplomas. I am sure they wanted to hear their name called when it was their turn to go up. As I sat in the back trying to listen, I observed kids running up an down the isles, screaming, talking, I even saw a few adults talking and carrying on. If it was distracting for me, I can just imagine what the professors trying to talk up there were feeling. I sat there thinking to myself, "I can't believe this! How rude."
And of course I can't really get mad at the kids because they had to learn that behavior was acceptable from somewhere. Someone let the boundaries go when the children were testing the waters. Where did all the discipline go? I know I would never throw a fit in a store when I was little because I did not want to be taken to the bathroom to get spanked. Now I see kids in stores who tell their parents a slew of bad things loud enough for all to hear! It's crazy. What a spoiled generation we have become.
One of our guest pastors told us a story about how his dad took him and all his brothers around their neighborhood and knocked on all the doors. He introduced them to all the people in the neighborhood and told them they were allowed to spank his boys and tell on them if they ever did anything wrong. Talk about accountability! When all adults held authority, kids were more in line. There was none of this "You're not my mom, what are you gonna do about it?"
There is a huge difference between spanking your kids and abusing them. The enemy knows this. He also knows we are suppose to correct our children, to teach them right from wrong. "Withhold not discipline from the child; for if you strike and punish him with the rod, he will not die. You shall whip him with the rod and deliver his life from Sheol" (Proverbs 23:13-14 AMP). It makes sense this would be distorted because the devil does not want well behaved people running around. That would ruin his plans!
I heard somewhere that the new generation was going to be called Generation I; because of things like the I-Pod and I-Phone. I think it is an appropriate name not because of all the gadgets we have, but because of the attitude we have adopted as a society. Generation I because it's all about me. What do I want? What can I get from this? When we made our lives all about ourselves instead of all about Him, the rudeness began.
It takes too much time and effort to think about others. If we stop to do that, what they want or need might interfere with our wants and needs then what do we do? We throw tantrums. I think some adults can even do it better than children can. They've already perfected it. So what can we as parents do about this me-me-me generation? Obviously we have to start at home. Let your kids know every time they are blessed it is because of a past action. The whole "what goes around comes around" scenario. It works!
I think we have lost what's known as common courtesy. In movie previews they now have to tell you to silence your cell phone and not to text during the movie. Shouldn't that already be a given? When did doing mean things like throwing your gum on the ground for someone to step on become fun? How does being annoying make you cool? How do you really feel when the tables are turned on you? Someone needs to be asking our kids these questions. If we don't, no one else will.
The "treat others as you want to be treated" generation can't all be gone yet. We've just been silent for a while. We need to rise up and start turning our kids around. There is still hope for the future. We just each have to do our part. "Use hospitality one to another without grudging" (1 Peter 4:9 NKJV).