I don’t even know how I knew. Call it a mother’s intuition, maybe I picked up on an inflection in his voice or a look in his eye. Maybe it was God.
We allowed the kids to have one piece of candy each after dinner. One of the boys sent his brother up to let the other brother know that he could come and pick a piece out. While his brother was away he tucked a second piece of chocolate into his pocket. I called him over and before he turned the corner he dropped his sweatshirt on the floor. I asked him to pick it up and bring it me. On his way over he attempted to smuggle the chocolate from his sweatshirt to his pants pocket, but… that didn’t work out so well.
I couldn’t help it. I cried when I confronted him. “They will all learn to lie, cheat and steal” (he) said. And while that may be true, it just breaks my heart.
We spoke to him about how disappointed we are. How we don’t want him to loose our trust. And most importantly about how he needs to think about why he made that extra piece of candy more important than trusting God. Dad did a great job of keeping a Biblical perspective and although we didn’t take anything away or give him a spanking I think that the conversation was good and effective.
The ugly truth is that we all have sin. I can’t make my children do or become anything. But we can raise them in a home that honors Christ. We can point them to a relationship with God. The rest is in His hands, and the most powerful tool I have for raising my little liars, cheaters and thieves is prayer.