Me, myself, and I.
No toddler needs to be introduced to these three. Self awareness is very strong in young children...what's mine is not yours, what's yours is now mine!
As parents we want to instill the awareness of Others in our children. More importantly, our great desire is that they would care more for others than themselves. This lesson is portrayed beautifully in the bible:
Matthew 25:34-40 "Then the King will say to those on his right, 'Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.' "Then the righteous will answer him, 'Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?' "The King will reply, 'I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these....you did for me.'
Alongside our friends at our church, we have been reaching out to a neighborhood where the kids often do without or with the very least. In the winter months we host open basketball nights and in the summer we hold free bbqs. What an opportunity for our girls to learn about feeding others! No lecture could convey this message clearer than participating in this endeavor together, as a family. How clearly they recognize that many do with far less than they have. Sharing and giving to Others - that is the vital life lesson, and our girls are loving the education (just look at the pictures!)! Sunday afternoons serving food and picking up trash is becoming a favorite family activity!