We teach our children to say the right things. How embarrassing it is when our children or grandchildren say the things that they have heard. My daughter and her family were traveling to Scottsdale for Christmas and had a plane trip from Virginia to Chicago and from Chicago to Phoenix. On the first leg of the journey, they landed in Chicago and were getting off the plane. As you walk out of the plane, there is usually a gap between the walkway and the plane. As they were stepping off the plane, Brayden, my oldest grandchild yelled, “O shit, it’s cold here” Out of the mouth of babes. It was embarrassing for my daughter, but that wasn’t the worst part.
When they got back on the plane heading to Phoenix, they weren’t up in the air more than 30 minutes when Brayden again blurted out, “Dad, you farted!” The plane got quiet and Brayden’s dad was trying to quiet him down by saying that it wasn’t him. He got even louder and said, “Dad, you did fart!” The whole plane erupted in laughter but it didn’t feel so good for Brayden’s parents.
There is a saying in computer terms today that goes like this, “Garbage in garbage out.” What you feed the computer is what you get out of the computer. If you put in negative stuff in the computer, you get negative stuff from the computer. I laughed until my gut hurt when I heard this story being retold by Victoria. It was funny then and still is. But there is a principle for raising children and for us as well.
Whatever we teach our children by what we say or what we do will be imitated by them in their actions. I will never forget living in the woods of Rowley, Massachusetts years ago. My oldest daughter was 2 years old at the time. I was out cutting and splitting wood for the winter months and had an axe as did she (a little plastic one to be clear). After some time had elapsed, I took a break and was shocked at what I saw. She was spitting. Where did she get that awful trait? From her mother? No she got it from me. I grew up working on a ranch and one of the things I learned from other ranch hands was to spit. She was just imitating actions that she saw in what her dad was doing.
The principle also applies to what we feed our mind. Whatever we read, or watch on TV, or listen to others will begin to filter out into our thoughts and attitudes and actions. If we read romantic novels over time, we can begin to fantasize what it would be like to be with someone else and will emotionally pull away from our present relationship. If we are looking at pornographic literature, our thoughts will begin to fantasize being with another woman and will negatively affect our connection with our wife.
On this journey we need to be careful what we feed our minds, showing others by our actions, as well as what we are teaching one another. What we dwell upon is what we and our children will become. Choose those things today that bring light to yourself and to others.