How do you know what you believe? What do you say you believe and what might others assume you believe. Why? Do these questions matter? Oh, yes!
Actions Speak Louder Than Words
Do you consider yourself a thinker? Do you want your children to think? Of course you do. I teach about this at some homeschooling conventions and have written about it here-and-there in several books. It’s essential that we and our children know how to compare, reason, explain, defend, predict, and so much more!
One of the most important things to do with our thinking ability is to determine what we believe. As I wrote about in the last issue, we each have a platform. Why is your platform yours? Why do you believe what you believe?
What about this question? How do you know what you believe? I know some people and follow some people on social media who say they believe “this” but there’s little evidence in the way they live their lives that they do. So, that’s one way to figure it out. Do we live so our beliefs show up? Beliefs can become obvious because they result in actions. Do our actions line up with what we say we believe or not? If they consistently don’t then I would suggest we’re not really believing what we say we are.
Another way that my beliefs become clear to me is when I’m troubled and frustrated. Why am I upset with what that person just did? Why did that person’s Facebook post concern me? Where’s my anger and disappointment coming from? Do you agree? Might this be a way God shows you what you truly believe?
Our actions speak volumes.
If we say compassion is an important value, then why do we too often respond to people’s circumstances with judgment instead? Maybe we don’t say anything out loud so we think we’re compassionate, but are we?
If we say voting is important, do we remind people to register? Do we offer them information about candidates or how to find it if they say they don’t know enough. Will we go out of our way and risk or not?
If we say people have a right to their opinions, do we dismiss them if they disagree with us? Do we try to bully them to agree with us?
I pray these examples have you thinking about what you value, what you say you believe, and what others might assume you believe. How can we use examples like these and feelings of frustration and anger to teach our children what we believe? Can we then teach them to pay attention so they can figure out what they believe? I think so. I hope so.
NOTE: This was first published as a column in the February 4th Celebrate Kids email newsletter. If you’d like to subscribe, you can do that here. https://celebratekids.com/newsletter/