Many kids learn “mine” at a young age and as they grow sharing with others becomes challenging. How do you teach kids to be givers and not just takers? Sowing seeds of giving will provide a wonderful example. They need to experience the joys of giving and learn why it’s better to give than to receive. Keep in mind that this doesn’t mean that you stop providing for your kids or teach them that it’s wrong to receive gifts and blessings. Start by becoming the giving example.
Be the Example
Giving will be a foreign concept unless kids can learn from watching those around them give to others. It’s important they learn all aspects of giving, including giving time, money, prayers, etc. Make a point when you are giving so your kids learn ways to be giving and how to develop a giving attitude.
Support Their Ideas
When your kids start experiencing the benefits of giving, they will most likely come up with their own ideas of how to give. Support them and let them explore this. They will develop their own giving talents and with guidance you may be amazed at what they begin doing. There are many kids today that have started huge movements of donations and giving that started from supportive parents.
List the Blessings
Turn moments of giving into teachable moments by having your child list the blessings of giving. The blessings are endless, especially when you begin to give frequently. For example, raking the leaves for an elderly person includes blessings of friendship, warm smiles and maybe even some cookies (this is not assumed, but from my experience an elderly lady will try to return the favor in the form of baked goods).
Let them Practice
Raising a giving child means letting them practice giving. Set the limits they need to work within, including financial and/or time. Then, let them come up with their own ideas. This is especially helpful during the holidays when needs seem to be greater for so many and a child’s wants can often become stressful for parents.
Breaking habits can be challenging, but it’s far easier to change the ways of a child than to try to change an adult. Luke 16:13 – 15 states:
“No servant can serve two masters. Either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and Money.” The Pharisees, who loved money, heard all this and were sneering at Jesus. He said to them, “You are the ones who justify yourselves in the eyes of men, but God knows your hearts. What is highly valued among men is detestable in God’s sight.”
A person cannot love both God and money (or possessions), so start transforming your children into loving givers who have hearts that are devoted to being God’s servants.
Seated In Him,
Shevon L. Sampson