When I was a little boy I used to love to watch my dad shave in the bathroom. I used to imagine what it would be like to be able to shave one day. Sometimes my dad would put shaving cream on my face and make me a little razor out of a matchbook cover so I could imitate what he did. Those are good memories for me and make me realize how much I learned from my dad by watching and imitating him.
As I think of those memories, as well of the memories I have of my children imitating me, I wonder what things I have been teaching them by example rather than by my words. I’m sure you have heard the saying, “do as I say, not as I do”. I’m also sure that as adults we would agree that far more is taught by example than by words. Whether we like it or not, our children will tend to follow our examples and can mirror those things we don’t want others to see (especially if they are younger).
In Philippians 4:9, Paul writes-“Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me-put into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.” It is interesting that Paul encourages the readers in Philippi to not only do what he says but also to imitate what he does. This can be a challenge to us all.
I would encourage you to be an intentional example to the children in your life this week. Let your children see you read God’s Word, talk about what God is teaching you, pray to God other than at mealtimes and live out and talk about your faith as you journey through your days. Be intentional about your example to the children in your life this week; so they can be imitators of you as you strive to be an imitator of Christ Jesus. Enjoy the journey.