Remember when the Berenstain Bears brother and sister were having a hard time getting along and Mama Bear gave them some requirements of things they had to do to be kind to each other that they thought was completely stupid? (although I'm sure they didn't use the word stupid...)
But they wanted Mama Bear off their backs so instead of just trying to follow her plan they excessively followed her plan. Using words like my sweet sister and dear dear brother as they opened doors for each other and helped the other with their dinner job. They were going as overboard as they could in hopes of annoying Mama Bear to the point of getting back to their 'normal' world.
Of course the joke was on them. Pretty soon it became natural for them to serve one another and be kind.
Last week in Family Night Beaner taught a lesson about Charity. It was an amazing lesson in which she quoted Paul from the New Testament saying "Charity never faileth". I don't think sister and brother bear realized they were treating each other with Charity. Maybe they didn't even know that the true definition of charity is "the pure love of Christ". When we treat others with respect and kindness, we are practicing and learning how to love as Christ does and be a little more like Him.
As part of her lesson she shared the story of a Pastor that we heard recently. Each night at dinner he would ask his children what they did for someone else that day. Knowing they would be asked that question, they went out of their way to serve or show charity in some way so that they could report to their dad that evening.
We were challenged to try that this past week. Just like the Berenstain's it started out a little excessive (like I care, as long as it is happening.. I felt a little like Mama Bear grinning to myself as they put on the butter =] )
I saw more hugging, more kind words, more helping than ever and ........
I loved it.
That was the best Family Night Lesson we've had in a long time with the best results I've seen in a long time and I hope it continues for a long time!
P.S. I'm pretty sure the results were much better than if the lesson had been presented by a parent.