When I was a little girl, my Mom focused on teaching me good manners.
When we would eat at home or go to restaurants, she would remind me how to: sit, place my napkin in my lap, use my utensils and place them down, chew with my mouth closed, not speak while chewing, saying please/thank you, and the list goes on.
To be honest, sometimes it drove me crazy.
But, it made a huge difference in my life and as a parent, teaching my own children about manners became important. It wasn’t important to me, only as a parent, I even focused on that when I taught two and three year olds in a preschool.
Good manners is definitely a reflection of love we have for others. Whether it’s not interrupting someone or talking with food in your mouth, it’s just loving another person more than yourself.
As I teach good manners to my teens and little guy, I always remind them to do or give to others out of joy and service for the Lord. Never to do so in a manner that brings light to them.
When they give or do something for someone, I want them to keep the focus on pleasing God, not for the recognition of man.
It’s easy to get caught up in this world that is focusing on instant gratification. It seems as though we may be losing our desire to love others through waiting patiently in line at the store, in our car at a light or just sharing a smile with someone. Every day we are making life easier with technology. Technology is wonderful in that it can be a tool to help us reduce the amount of time we spend on certain things (like waiting).
But, I wonder, are we losing the beauty of having patience….and thus have less time to love others with good manners?
I don’t know the answer to that.
I do love it, though, when another person smiles at me, says ‘please/thank you’….and that Mom pride does swell up when someone goes out of their way to thank me for teaching my children manners.
It’s so easy to get caught up in the negativity of this world, but good manners can bring it full circle and help us to love others and cause a ripple effect that can impact the world.
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