Grab the Power in a Teachable Moment

by | Sep 19, 2014 | Woman

It was an ordinary day.

I was leaving the doctor’s office with my three kids when the homeless man approached us. He was in a wheelchair and was missing a leg. I’d just gotten the kids buckled into their car seats when he approached asking for food. I “just so happened” to have a packed lunch with me. I also had recently been to the bakery, and I’d picked up some donuts for my grandma for a treat.

I gave the man the lunch and offered him the biggest donut. His eyes grew wide. “Is this cream-filled?” It turned out it was, and the man’s face filled with joy. He ate it with pleasure.

It was only as I backed away that I realized my kids had been watching everything.

 

Even though I never intended it to be, that was a teachable moment.

We talked about homelessness. We talked about caring for those God brings into our paths. We talked about sharing what we had. We talked about kindness. And that night—as the kids shared about the experience with their dad—we talked about it again.

How can you take advantage of the unexpected, teachable moments in life? Here are some ideas from experts (and expert moms).

Converse creatively

“Learn the art of meandering conversation. When you’re working a puzzle with your kids or riding in the car together, talk about worries or other crisis times. As a way to get started, use something you heard about, something you saw on TV, or something that happened to you as a child.” —Ron Rose, Seven Things Kids Never Forget

I especially love the idea of sharing stories from my own childhood. There are lessons each of us has learned that can be passed on to our kids.

Be real

“When I fail, when I say something really stupid, I ask my children’s forgiveness.” —Maxine, mother of four

Being real means owning up to our faults and exhibiting what it means to be humble and thoughtful. Seeing the way we respond will teach our children how to act.

Show you care

“When uncertainty clouds your children’s vision, lead them to their knees in prayer—pray with them often and about everything.” —John William Smith, Hugs for Mom

One day on the way to town we saw an accident, and I told my kids we should pray for the drivers. Now every time they see an accident (or even someone pulled over!) my children want to pray. Whenever I see concern or worry in their gazes over anything, I know it’s time to pray.

Be available

“When my children ask me a question, I make it a point to stop whatever I am doing to answer it right away. I want them to know I place priority on them and their questions.” —Tamela, mother of two

I’ve found that eye contact with my children makes a big difference. When I take time to focus on their faces, a connection is made. If they’re coming to me, I want my children to know I’m available and I care. If I don’t take time to listen to my children about the little things, they won’t come to me about the big issues of life.

Take advantage of all life’s situations

“I try to share words of wisdom during fun times, like when we’re enjoying popcorn and a movie or picking flowers outside. It’s then that they’re more likely to listen.” —Cindy, mother of five

Give your time

“It is clear to me that the time [my children and I] spent together in those formative years strengthened our relationships in their teenage years. Our time together bonded us to each other and laid a foundation of open communication, helping us establish mutual trust and loyalty that grew into a warm, lasting friendship.” —Donna J. Miller, Growing Little Women

I’ve found that bonds are built when I appreciate my children’s strengths. Making a list of those strengths, thanking God for them, and praising our children makes a difference in their hearts. And as they grow, the connection grows!

How about you?

How do you take advantage of teachable moments with your children?

Prayer

God, show me the moments that I can use fully with my children. Allow us to take advantage of every second by creatively conversing and experiencing life together. Make me sensitive to the moments of life that will have a big impact on my child’s life.

Tricia Goyer has written more than 35 books, including both novels that delight and entertain readers and nonfiction titles that offer encouragement and hope. She has also published more than 500 articles in national publications such as Guideposts, Thriving Family, Proverbs 31 and HomeLife Magazine.

CHARISMA NEWSLETTERS

Stay up-to-date with current issues, Christian teachings, entertainment news, videos & more.

The latest breaking Christian news you need to know about as soon as it happens.

Prophetic messages from respected leaders & news of how God is moving throughout the world. 


MORE FROM CHARISMA

How the Holy Spirit Can Restore Your True Sanity

How the Holy Spirit Can Restore Your True Sanity

Most of my life I tried to avoid one thing—being crazy or insane. When I was growing up my mother had emotional issues and saw a psychiatrist regularly. She was on medication which only seemed to make her mood swings worse. She had high highs, and low lows. When I...

Israel Prophecy: The Enemy is Stirring an Unimaginable Conflict

Israel Prophecy: The Enemy is Stirring an Unimaginable Conflict

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KJFFqAgykmU A cease-fire between Israel and Palestinian militants took effect late Sunday in a bid to end nearly three days of violence that killed dozens of Palestinians and disrupted the lives of hundreds of thousands of Israelis,...

Why Partial Obedience to God is Disobedience

Why Partial Obedience to God is Disobedience

My husband had a saying for our children growing up. “Partial obedience is disobedience.” He wanted them to understand that doing half the plan would not get them the full reward. Another reminder we used to tell our kids was, “Don’t think about it, don’t hesitate,...

Kingdom Economics: Why is America Declining Spiritually So Quickly?

Kingdom Economics: Why is America Declining Spiritually So Quickly?

The Bureau of Labor Statistics released a surprisingly strong July Employment Report.  Total nonfarm employment was 528K (398K previously, 250K expected).  Private nonfarm employment was 471K (404K previously, 230K expected). The headline unemployment rate dropped to...

Can You Discern Spiritual Wind?

Can You Discern Spiritual Wind?

The wind is a funny thing. We do not know where it comes from nor where it goes. We cannot see it, but we can see and feel its effects. Wind can be gentle and refreshing, cold or hot, strong, and dangerous, and everything in between. When the wind blows, we must...

Messianic Rabbi: He That Has an Eye, Let Him Hear

Messianic Rabbi: He That Has an Eye, Let Him Hear

It is interesting that, as a Messianic rabbi the question I am asked most often by Christians is if I believe that they as Christians have to celebrate, or observe, the biblical Holy Days. They are usually asking about those days listed in Leviticus 23: Shabbat, Yom...

How the Holy Spirit Is Preparing America

How the Holy Spirit Is Preparing America

As the crackdown against Christianity in America grows, it is a cycle believers have seen before. While no one celebrates their religious freedom coming under attack, God has used this persecution to great effect throughout history. Over the centuries, there have been...

RECENT ARTICLES

Dealing Effectively with the Dynamics of Change

Change can be challenging. Some people look forward to change and embrace it. Some people dread change and try to avoid it. Since change is inevitable, so here are some of the dynamics surrounding...
God’s Holy Interruption Is Coming Soon

God’s Holy Interruption Is Coming Soon

This past weekend I preached at The Roads Church, a charismatic congregation located in the tiny town of Norris City, Illinois. Located amid cornfields, the population is only 1,325, but almost that many people visit the church on weekends. They come from all over...

The Biblical Way to Rise Above Mediocre Expectations

The Biblical Way to Rise Above Mediocre Expectations

We spend a lot of life figuring out if we “measure up,” a phrase someone coined in the mid-1800s. Even in childhood, we begin comparing ourselves with siblings and kids at school, and it never seems to stop. The problem goes back to Cain and Abel, doesn’t it? Most of...

A Better Way to Witness to Others for Christ

A Better Way to Witness to Others for Christ

”Don’t you see how wonderfully kind, tolerant, and patient God is with you? Does this mean nothing to you? Can’t you see that his kindness is intended to turn you from your sin?” (Rom. 2:4). Looking retrospectively at my past as an atheist, I can see where God...

Why Does God Want Us to Speak with Tongues?

Why Does God Want Us to Speak with Tongues?

Why speak with tongues? There are many reasons for speaking in a spiritual language. Primarily, though, the Scriptures require it. The apostle Paul commanded us, saying, “Pray in the Spirit always” (Eph. 6:18). Jude commanded it in verse 20, saying, “Pray in the Holy...

Pin It on Pinterest

[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]