Motherhood has been such a humbling experience for me. I came into this thinking I was super woman and could rule my home world with my cape and a whisk. But that entire facade shattered
within a matter of months days minutes pretty much as soon as labor began.
Although I absolutely adore my children and continue to be amazed at these beyond incredible little (and bigger) people who the Lord has graciously put under my care, some days I forget how much I love them because I allow their flesh (and mine) to steal my joy and pleasure and focus.
All of us are aware of each other’s struggles, and so far we have not yet been successful in figuring out how to lovingly respect the strengths and weaknesses of each personality in the family. But, praise the Lord, He does not leave us in our struggles. He is so good to us.
10 Character Qualities to Teach to Children (& Ourselves)
Well, the kids and I made up a list of the top things that we all wanted to work on as a family. They shouted out the topics, I wrote them down, and then we found Bible verses to coincide with the traits.
These are now posted on our walls, not to be ominous statements of condemnation and presented failures (because there is no condemnation in Christ), but rather gentle and loving reminders of what the life of a believer looks like. These help to keep God’s Ways out in the open to hold us accountable to our “set apart” calling.
I encourage you to print these out and post them in obvious places for your family to enjoy. I went to Staples to get mine printed and they came out beautifully! I highly recommend having them print it on a card stock rather than the simple paper, but both are lovely.
Quick aside: When I went to Staples to get these printed, I was truly being tested in my patience! One machine after the other did not want to work with me to simply help me get these things printed with ease. What I thought would take a matter of minutes ended up closer to 20 because of technological disagreement. At one point while I was dealing with my annoyance, a still small voice pointed out the irony of the situation. Here I was, working so hard to print out character qualities to build in our family, which include things like gentility and patience, and I was getting all worked up because of a few minute delay. Suddenly the whole thing was comedic, and I told the devil he wasn’t going to get the better of me! Then, the whole thing became 85,000 times easier…and of course was finished up in minutes. So, if you are getting ready to really get serious about developing character as a family and learning the Ways of the Lord, watch out! The enemy loves to throw some fiery darts at those who are the King’s. Get your shield up and be ready to wield the Sword, which is the Word!
Okay, without further adieu, here’s the list.
1. Humility – modest estimate of one’s own worth
Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.” ~ Phil. 2: 3-4
2. Patience – calm temper without complaining or discontentment
Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.” ~ Romans 12: 2
3. Kindness – goodwill, happiness towards others, acts of goodwill
Consider therefore the kindness and sternness of God: sternness to those who fell, but kindness to you, provided that you continue in his kindness.” ~ Romans 11: 22
4. Forgiveness – pardon of an offender
Then Peter came to Jesus and asked, ‘Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother or sister who sins against me? Up to seven times?’ Jesus answered, ‘I tell you, not seven times, but seventy-seven times.'” ~ Matthew 18: 21-22
5. Encouraging Others – to give courage, support, and confidence of success to others
Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.” ~ 1 Thess. 5: 11
6. Joy – emotion excited by expectation of good, happiness
Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.” ~ Romans 12: 12
7. Initiative – ability to start things independently
If anyone, then, knows the good they ought to do and doesn’t do it, it is sin for them.” ~ James 4: 17
8. Thoroughness – doing something to completion with attention to detail
All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God[a] may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.” ~ 2 Timothy 3: 16-17
9. Diligence – constant effort with attention until work is finished; work ethic
A slack hand causes poverty,
but the hand of the diligent makes one rich.” ~ Proverbs 10: 4
10. Gentle Words/Soft Speech – using words and the tongue to build up, edify, and encourage others in Godly living
Those who consider themselves religious and yet do not keep a tight rein on their tongues deceive themselves, and their religion is worthless.” ~ James 1: 26
+ the Printables!
I hope you enjoy these bonus printables! Have fun encouraging one another and growing together in unity and love. Remember, child training (i.e. life) is a gradual process of falling, failing, and then getting back up and trying again, so be sure to give both yourself, and your children lots of grace as you go through your journey!