Romance begins early in life. Case in point: my grandson gives me a daily, person-by-person account of who in his kindergarten class is in love with whom. His definition of a healthy romantic relationship is: “She’s nice to me all the time and I’m nice to her all the time.” I have to admit that’s a pretty good place to start.
The love poems known as Song of Songs in the Bible are attributed to King Solomon. In the context of six songs, a man and a woman pour out their passions for one another. The poems explore the joys and challenges of romantic relationships from the heady fervor of a first kiss to the deep-seated conclusion of matured love. The thing is, children do not typically learn about love from poems. They learn about love by observation.
Children are subjected to the flawed secular portrayal of romance. But they also see the way adult family members demonstrate love for one another. Be aware, your romance is showing. The things you do are more telling than the words you use. Let them see you work through personal differences and face challenges together.
Teach them about romance by letting them see you holding hands and holding embraces. Show consistency in the way you interact with one another and with them. Welcome them into the circle of a family hug. It gives them a sense of stability. And remind children that they are genuinely worthy of love. This gives a true picture of God’s plan for romance.
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I was reminded last week that we all need to be taken care of from time to time. All the men in my family took turns dancing with the flu bug. My workout routine one day amounted to sprinting between the sick grandchild on the living room sofa and the equally sick husband propped up on our bed. Neither could muster enough energy to do anything beyond those things the flu makes one do.
Admittedly I’m not a doctor or a nurse. But during breaks between sprints, I consulted WebMD online and a wellness reference book we keep on hand for situations like this. I wanted to find out what I could do to help my guys regain a state of health. Thumbing through the pages seeking answers reminded me that our Great Physician has given us the most useful health reference book of all time. It’s called the Bible.
His reference book has answers for our every need, even the ones we don’t yet know we have. In Mark 2:17, Jesus said, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.” God understands our persistent need for healing. He knows we are incapable of helping ourselves without Him. And He generously provides the services of the ultimate caregiver, the Holy Spirit, who ministers to our spiritual welfare. What a refreshing thought!
Addendum: That old adage “what goes around comes around” proved to be true at our house. A few days after my nursing duties were performed, I was down for the count fighting my own battle with the flu. This time my husband was the one wearing a nurse’s cap.
So, I’m sitting here staring at a blank page. Sound familiar? Nothing is going to happen until I start hitting keys on the computer and stringing sentences together. That’s the reality of writing. It’s not as difficult as it might sound – really it isn’t. All it takes is a moment while my fingers are poised above the keys for thoughts to emerge. I just need to give those thoughts some direction.
Spiritual Legacy Memoir is about writing for children. In my case, that’s primarily for my grandson. He was with me in the morning before I started to write this, sharing time over breakfast before school. In the midst of downing a bowl of Captain Crunch, my grandson said, “I like this cereal better than the Cheerios his Dad has at home.” I considered the nuances of that statement.
For one, it means his Dad is providing his son with less sugar-laden cereal than I allowed. (Let it be noted here that I also give said child generous portions of broccoli and carrots.) It also means Dad and I have a common interest in the well-being of this child, beyond food and school.
What’s more important than filling my grandson’s belly with cereal is filling his heart with a love for the Lord. His Dad and I share this goal. You probably have similar shared goals with parents, adult children, or guardians of a certain child. What would you say to that child if you were staring at a blank page right now? Go ahead, write it down.
Don’t forget to share your ideas and experiences about writing for children at SpiritualLegacyMemoir.com.