Thoughts for Thursday

I’m linking up for another edition of Thoughts for Thursday!  I’m joining Home of Malones and East Coast Chic by sharing some thoughts. 

“Train up a child in the way he should go,
And when he is old he will not depart from it.”  Proverbs 22:6

I 100% believe that as a Christian Mama leading my children to Jesus, teaching them stories from Gods’ Word, and growing their faith is mine (and Tab’s) responsibility.  We work on this all year long.

Every once in a while I stumble upon a new family devotion or activity (or in this case remember one from years ago) that I try with our family.  I’m sharing one today and would love to hear more ideas!  

Around our house with a girl and boy so close in age sometimes they say naughty words they shouldn’t say to each other.  In the grand scheme of life are they crazy naughty?  NO, but they’re words they shouldn’t be speaking to their siblings.  Anyway, in college I remember a speaker doing this little activity.  She made it WAY more in depth, but for my kiddos we stuck with this verse…

Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.”  Ephesians 4:29

I got each child a small travel size of toothpaste for this activity.  We talked about how when we say mean things to other people, it hurts.  As much as we may want to apologize and wish we hadn’t said them, we can never fully take the words back.  We demonstrated this by pushing toothpaste out of the tube to represent the ugly words we say.  Then I told the kids to put the toothpaste back in the tube to represent us apologizing or wishing later we wouldn’t have said them.  Try as they may, they could hardly get ANY toothpaste back in the tube let alone all of it.  We tied it right back into that verse in Ephesians.  

This totally wasn’t my idea (wish I could claim it), but it speaks truth to us all.  Doesn’t it?  ๐Ÿ™‚
Do you have any ideas??  Maybe you remember some from youth group or college too?  I’d love to hear them!  (I’m sure we all would)  ๐Ÿ™‚

Hope you enjoyed the short and sweet today, friends!  XOXO
Happy Thursday!

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  1. 3.31.16
    Lindy said:

    I had this exact same talk with my son and daughter last night. The example I used was this: Your relationship is like a beautiful house made out of bricks and each time one of you says something ugly to the other, one brick gets taken out of the walls of the house. Then I asked them what will happen when too many bricks are taken out? They both said:the house will fall down. We try to explain to them that family comes first, we are to encourage and not criticize, we are working on memorizing that verse and of course prayer is the ultimate weapon! It's all spiritual warfare! Keep fighting the good fight sister๐Ÿ˜‰ I think I heard about the brick example through an article I read, the writer built a house out of sugar cubes and kept it on their kitchen counter, and took one cube off each time she heard something hurtful or negative being said. I might try this.

    • 3.31.16
      Erika Slaughter said:

      I love this idea!!! Thank you for sharing!!

  2. 3.31.16
    Sheaffer {Pinterest Told Me To} said:

    What a simple activity that illustrates the idea perfectly to kids!

  3. 3.31.16
    Mix and Match Mama said:

    I'm totally using this idea. Brilliant.

  4. 3.31.16
    Anonymous said:

    Oh, this is SO good! I'm buying extra toothpaste today!! What a great illustration!

  5. 3.31.16
    Kimm said:

    We have done something similar to this. We took a piece of paper, a perfect piece of notebook paper, crumbled it up and then tried to make it flat and perfect again…and you just can't …though you can try and fix it, it's never the same. I try and teach my children that you can always apologize, but unfortunately sometimes some of the damage caused will always remain. Loved the toothpaste idea, especially for younger children

  6. 3.31.16
    Kfran said:

    I am a school social worker for K-5 & use this lesson with students during my monthly class visits. The kids love it!

  7. 3.31.16
    R's Rue said:

    Good idea!

  8. 3.31.16
    Unknown said:

    Hi Erika,
    I am a teacher and have done a similar activity, but with paper. Each child gets a paper heart. They are asked to crumble it up into a ball. The force of their hands balling up the paper symbolizes mean words and actions that people do. When they're done, they unfold their paper to find a wrinkled, and sometimes ripped, paper heart. I tell them to spend a few minutes trying to smooth out the wrinkles. They quickly realize that despite their efforts, the wrinkles remain. Some of the kids even whisper nice things to the heart like, "I'm so sorry little heart!" This leads to a conversation that no matter how nice we respond or how hard we try, some things(like mean words) are permanent. Not all words and actions can be erased, no matter how much we wish they could or how hard we try. I leave the wrinkled hearts up in my classroom to promote a healthy environment.

    Just like your toothpaste idea, this was not my original idea, but it has worked for me!

  9. 3.31.16
    "The Mrs." said:

    My mom did this with us when we were younger. I still remember the day…awesome activity!

  10. 3.31.16
    Chasity @ Haute Mommy Blog said:

    Oh that's a good one! I've been trying to teach my four year old that her smart tone and sometimes intentional snappiness hurts feelings, but she just doesn't get it. I think I'll pick up some toothpaste today and see if that helps. I totally thought you were going to make them eat toothpaste, haha!! I'd love for you to share more parenting tips like this.

  11. 3.31.16
    Unknown said:

    My mom totally made my sister, cousin, and I do this one time when we were younger because we would not stop fighting! It left a large impact on me, that's for sure!

  12. 3.31.16
    Shelly @ The Queen in Between said:

    Well isn't that a genius idea! Here I am always just threatening to put soap in their mouths. I love this…great lesson.

  13. 3.31.16
    Christina said:

    What a great idea! I also like the idea of crumpling up a heart. Thank you so much for sharing the scripture you used as well. I would love it if you made this a weekly or monthly feature on your blog. I'm constantly looking for inspiration on how to explain things in a way my children will understand, and that is in line with scripture. Thank you so much!

  14. 3.31.16
    Unknown said:

    We just did a devotion out of our Jesus Calling- Children's Edition that my kids really loved. The devotion was talking about how Jesus controls our lives. And we talked about how when we play video games, we use a controller to control our little person on the screen. And that when we let God control our lives, it kind of works the same way. This really struck home with my oldest, who loves video games. This might be a neat way to illustrate how God controls our lives. Can't wait to read everyone's ideas!

  15. 4.1.16
    Elise @ Her Heart and Home said:

    As if I couldn't love you more already!!! Used to do that toothpaste lesson as a devotion to my campers at camp!!! Such a good one!! xx