Scripture Motto

"Let your good deeds shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father." Matthew 5:16

Monday, March 26, 2012

Teach Your Children


“…when you are at home....on the road...going to bed...getting up.” Deut. 6:7 nlt

Dog food, potatoes, and toilet paper lay on the bottom rack. Bread, eggs, and chips fill the child-seat section. Frozen corn, peas, mixed vegetables, and a bag of strawberries almost toppled from the heap.  My teenage son pushed the cart while my preteen guided the wheeled contraption to the check out.
The oldest unloaded our bounty onto the moving belt and the younger took his station at the end to bag it. The clerk scanned the merchandise as I sorted coupons and prepared my check.
It was a typical Friday at Harvest Home Academy.
Monday through Thursday they studied math, reading, science, and social studies. We reserved Fridays for field trips. The grocery store—yes, a field tripgave us the opportunity to incorporate it into their studies. They calculated weights and prices for the best deals. They read labels for healthy choices and coupons for requirements. They put their social studies to practice in recognizing the origin of products. And they developed shopping etiquette and money management for a lifetime.

It breaks my heart when parents deny the lessons of the grocery store to their children. Granted, when my sons were younger the lessons involved proper behavior and saying “no” to this and that, but I still used the opportunity to teach.
When the boys received any money—i.e. birthday, allowance—we encouraged them to set aside 10% for Sunday school offering, save a portion for a big “I want” thing, and allow them to spend the rest as they desired. The as desired portion often went toward pop and candy. It amazed me how one could stretch a dollar by buying a can of generic soda pop and a candy bar to get change back; while the other one asked for a few pennies to pay the tax he forgot to calculate with his purchase.
The reference in Deuteronomy is speaking specifically about teaching your children to love the Lord God, however, throughout the Bible we are instructed to teach them to be all-round good members of society.

I encourage you to use every opportunity to teach your children to be wise managers of their finances and their belongings. Find creative ways to show, and then let them do it. Give them time to learn and perfect their skills. It’s the job as parents to raise responsible citizens. Today, my grown sons live on their on but still make shopping list, use coupons, read labels, and calculate the best buy.

“We have become ninety-nine percent money mad. The method of living at home modestly and within our income, laying a little by systematically for the proverbial rainy day which is due to come, can almost be listed among the lost arts.”
George Washington Carver, 1864-1943, American scientist, botanist, educator, inventor

LAST WEEK: Because I believe everyone should experience financial freedom, I have two copies of “The Financial Stewardship Bible” to give away March 31st to Fellow Sojourners of this site. Leave a comment to one of the March 2012 posts and tell why you wish to receive a copy.

(Simple rules: Be a Fellow Sojourners of this site AND leave a comment to one of the March posts. One comment per post will be counted, but commenting to each March post will increase your chances of winning. If you are a winner, I will leave you a message with further instructions.)