Not as I do. How many of you have ever heard that quote? It is ridiculous really. Nothing speaks louder of our lives than our actions. The way we act is what informs those around us ABOUT us.
Having children is basically placing your entire life under a microscope. There is nothing more annoying than having eight little eyes watching your every move in an up close and personal way. Try going to the bathroom alone folks. Definitely not going to happen.
As dumb as the quote is "do as I say not as I do" and you will never hear me say it to my kids BUT I have found that I live it out. For example, after a drive in the van with my four angels, where the talking has become shrill and turned to yelling with a few bouts of crying in between...my anger level slowly rising to the point of boiling. I yell at them. That's what I said! I YELL AT THEM! (And now I have yelled at you too.)
Moving this story along, some time later I hear my oldest child, who is now six, get in a rage about something her three year old punk brother has done. She starts screaming at the top of her lungs informing him of her unhappiness.
*fold arms - cross legs - tilt head upward- insert thought bubble "hhhhhmmm"
Right?! I must raise my voice often enough that my oldest child has found it necessary to do the same with her siblings.
*insert mom freak out moment
My actions are speaking far louder than my words. Me saying to my kids "speak kindly and softly" means jack when their whining drives me to yelling.
What can I say? I come by it honestly. I come from a family of yelling folk. That isn't truly my excuse, but it is also true. Parts of my childhood are stuck to me with super glue. I can't erase them. Through God's help I can surely change them.
I want to become fluent in the gospel of Christ. So the way I speak to my children, my husband, and those around me on the daily is full of love. Joy. Peace. Patience. And all those fruits of the spirit. As I fill my time and thoughts with Jesus and His Word, I begin to see a change. From the inside out, I become free and it seeps into my children's lives.
Thank God for His grace AND for creating children to be so forgiving. Isn't God good?