To connect with our Holidays 101 theme, I am choosing meditations that might connect to the challenges the holidays too often bring. With all the pressure to give and to receive gifts, all the wanting and wishing, children sometimes succumb to the temptation to shoplift their way to the holidays.
How could they do this? We go to that store all the time. Now I'm not sure that I will ever feel comfortable going there again. I know they are not welcome there anymore, and I can't help feeling responsible. Yes, I taught them better. Yes, I know they know better. But they still chose to put it in their pockets instead of paying for it or doing without. And heaven help them if they try the "Everybody does it" line. That is worse than an excuse. They know they made the choice themselves. Peer pressure, even if it does happen, is not an excuse for doing wrong, much less for stealing. I don't care that what they stole was small. It is still stealing. Guide me in helping them turn away from this choice. Help me teach them more effectively how to resist the temptations. Give me the words and actions to help them resist and make better choices. Help me lead them to develop and to prize their integrity.
Excerpted from "The Caring Heart Speaks: Meditations for foster, kinship, and adoptive parents" by Gail Underwood Parker Artwork by Anna Parker David from the book cover.