Proverbs 12:18 – The words of the reckless pierce like swords, but the tongue of the wise brings healing.
I spent all weekend hearing my girls getting upset with each other saying things like, “I hate you!” and “You are stupid!”. This was usually followed by hair pulling, pushing, or hitting. This of course caused the mom guilt — how did the happen? Why are they acting this way? I must be a terrible mom.
This guilt caused my anxiety to spike, and I found myself hollering just as much as them. “Stop it!” “Leave your sister alone” “Who started it!?”
I went to bed Sunday night feeling exhausted. Is this really what being a parent is suppose to feel like? A constant battle. I don’t think so! Time to be proactive I thought to my self — and I prayed.
This is what my answer was… a lesson on kindness. This is what parenting is suppose to be — a way to show life to my girls in away that Jesus would want. (because my hollering is getting us nowhere, and is just teaching them to scream)
This kindness object lesson with toothpaste is a visual demonstration on how important it is for us to use kind words. There is the saying, “Stick and stones will break my bones, but words will never hurt me.” I know this is far from the truth — as I was picked on as a child, often playing hookie from school just so I wouldn’t have to be bullied. AND in my adult years being in two verbal/physical abusive relationships.
This is why I want to teach my girls that words have meaning. So I decided to teach them that words are like a tube of toothpaste. If used the right way, toothpaste helps clean our teeth & keep our mouth healthy. Words are the same way. If we use our words to cheer someone up and say nice, helpful things — our words can bring joy to someone else.
Sometimes we can get sloppy with our toothpaste. It can end up all over the sink, our hands, and the tube. It is the same with our words. Sometimes we aren’t careful with our words, and out of anger and frustration we can say things out of our mouths that can make a mess as well. We can hurt other peoples feelings.
I gave the girls some tubes of toothpaste to squirt out their toothpaste. I told them to think of mean hurtful things that they sometimes tell their sister. I then gave them a q-tip and asked them to try and put the toothpaste back into the tube after they squirted it all out. Explaining it was the same as saying “sorry” or “just kidding”. They found that it wasn’t easy to put the toothpaste back into the tube. I explained it is the same as words, that once you say them sometimes it doesn’t take the sting way, and that person may still be hurt. (a mess)
The Bible says “Reckless words pierce like a sword.” — Just like the toothpaste words, they make messes in our lives and in others.
The Bible continues to say, “but the tongue of the wise brings healing” Proverbs 12:18. I explained to the girls that we want our words to be helpful to people. Just like toothpaste, when we use it right can keep us healthy. We want to use our words to help bring joy and health to our friends, family and neighbors.
I explained to the girls that I want them to be life-givers known for their gentleness and compassion. It is something that this world so desperately needs. And, it is something we all need to work on (me included).