Have you ever been shopping and needed assistance to find what you are looking for? Recently, while at a local store with our family, we enlisted the help of a clerk who was less than enthused to help us. A few days later we heard that this employee had been dealing with some serious health issues that made him sick from time to time. As we received this information, we realized that every person has a story to consider before jumping to judgment. These questions will help you open a conversation at the table to teach your children to consider one another and to encourage them.
When have you misjudged someone?
Misjudging can be the result of simply not knowing all the facts. As they relate their story encourage them to understand how knowing more information may have helped them make a better decision about that person.
How would you have felt if you had known that person’s story?
Help them explore their feelings of compassion and to understand that their kind words or actions may have been just what they person needed to help them overcome their current situation.
How can your compassion help others who are dealing with tough situations?
You may not be able to find a cure for someone’s illness, or a solution for his or her financial crisis, but kind words of compassion and encouragement can go a long way. Learning to consider others will also help your children become caring and discerning adults who may just discover answers to many of our societal dilemmas.
As you conclude this dinner conversation, encourage your children that as you take the time to consider others more deeply you can usually learn more about their situation in order to respond in a loving and encouraging way. Everyone has a story; and considering one another will make the world a better place.