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Values are caught, not taught |

Health And Family

Values are caught, not taught

- MOMMY TALK By Maricel Laxa-Pangilinan -
As a twig is bent, the tree inclines.

Virgil, 70-19 B.C.

Be kind, be polite, be neat, be clean, be gentle, always. Not because people are but because you are.

Sally Lising

I was awakened by my daughter Hannah, who barged into my room to use my computer. I reminded her of the need to be very quiet when there are people sleeping as I’ve told her tons of times. "It shows you respect the people sleeping, Hannah," I added. I usually get upset when awakened. This time, I managed to smile because I realize that she probably hasn’t fully understood what it means to be sensitive to others. Since she was using my PC to play some games, I decided to go elsewhere to work on my article. Before I knew it, she was beside me tinkering with different things and was perennially asking me questions. I admit getting distracted by it and politely asked her to leave so that I could continue doing my work. I also wanted her to learn to respect others when they are busy with something. Since Hannah is only four years old, I am quite lenient with her when it comes to propriety. As she grows older, I will be expecting more from her as I diligently try to teach her the right way to conduct herself. More than just doing the right thing, Anthony reminded me of the need to teach our children to do what is right. He cited the example of Mary and Martha in the Bible. Both women were doing commendable tasks, but it was Mary whom Jesus acknowledged to be doing what was right by sitting by His side and enjoying His company while Martha chose to be buried in the task of preparing food and making the Master’s stay comfortable. In the case of Hannah, I had spent the whole morning with her and was quite confident to know that she didn’t lack my attention so it was only right to continue my work. Otherwise, stopping work to attend to her would’ve been what was right.

I had wanted to share different tips on good manners and right conduct. Instead, I will enumerate what love is and what it’s not ( from the virtues found 1 Corinthians 13). It’s easy to tell our children or even each other how to better conduct ourselves but ultimately, we show love to others when we are sensitive to their feelings. Indeed, we must do what is right not because other people expect us to do so or for the sake of getting their approval. We must do what’s right because we care for them and have their best intentions in mind. In the end, we also benefit from it. As the saying goes, do unto others what you want others to do unto you. We know the rest of the story about sowing and reaping. What we sow is what we reap.

Values are caught, not taught. As we show love in different ways to each other, constantly and consistently, we teach good values to our children. Enjoy!

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