I have a confession – I was visiting someone’s house who has kids about the age of our kids. When I walked into their house I thought (this is embarrassing) “their house is really messy..”. Yup. I thought that. It was ugly. Then something funny happened. I went home. Lesley had cleaned our house to the best she could – when I got home she was leaving for some time “out of the house” – within 30 minutes of Lesley leaving our house looked like the people’s house I was visiting earlier that day that who I was judging.
I’ve found myself recently thinking and even saying “stop the random pick-up-this-toy-and-drop-it-in-this-room-and-move-to-the-next-room-and-do-the-samething-over-and-over-again craziness.”.
“Necessity is the mother of invention”
This morning at the breakfast table I asked the boys to look around the room and tell me a need they saw.. someone pointed out that the orange juice was empty. But they couldn’t go to the store to get orange juice – Lesley made the comment “you can’t go to the store, but there is a note pad on the refrigerator — you could start to make a list of what we need at the store.”
Someone else said: “We need to clear the table.”
Someone else said: “We need to sweep the floor.”
Someone else said: “We need to rake leaves.”
Our goal as parents in this little “game” we invented is to train them to start to be observant. To look around them and see needs of others AND do WHAT THEY CAN DO to help and serve. I believe teaching kids this “observation game” will train them to look most immediately at our house (because Lesley and I cannot (and should not) pick up after everyone. Eventually (sooner than later) the will look at their fiends, neighborhood, community, church, city, country, and world with a servant heart.
Lesley has wisely been saying “be the change” for the last few months. Be the change you want to see.. we too often fall into a mentality like this: “I don’t have _____. I can’t _______. They don’t _________. They have _______.”.
How many times do you see something or even complain about something that you don’t like or wish was different but don’t do anything about it? Maybe you literally can’t do anything but maybe you can’t and decide not to. I would imagine most of us would admit to seeing a piece of trash on the street and don’t pick it up – this is just a simple example.
Instead, what need do you see that you can be the change?
Bringing this full circle: Jesus sees every need and is able to meet every need. If we are following him, truly following him in every step and every way. I believe he will reveal to us needs he is asking us to address – to be the change in a neighborhood, community, etc… as we follow him.
What need do you see.. and not only that – what need do you see that you can do something about? GO MEET THE NEED.