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I’ll Never Do That

By:  Donna Martin

Do you remember when you were a child or teenager and you vowed that you would never act like your parents?  A few weeks ago my newlywed daughter laughed and said, “Mom the other day I acted just like you!”  I wondered if what followed would make me laugh or cringe.  As it turned out, she has developed a sense of humor like her mom and the incident was funny.  I think it is interesting to observe how children unconsciously take on their parents’ habits.  Sons walk like their dads.  Daughters laugh like their mothers. Whether we like it or not we do become our parents to some extent.  This fact should be a warning to all parents.  Would you be happy if your child becomes you?  Think about the things you say and do every day.

What about your diet?  Are you eating the way you want your child to eat?  If your child becomes you, will they have a healthy diet?  Will they eat fruits, vegetable and good foods?  Will they develop high cholesterol and if they do, will they have to break a habit of eating too much fat and sugar?

Do you worry often?  Have you developed high blood pressure due to your stress and tension?  Have you noticed that your children are beginning to worry about things that they should not worry about? Are they unusually fearful of storms, people, or things over which they have no control? I remember a time when my son was screaming in terror over a tiny spider in his room.  Can you guess who taught him to be afraid of spiders? Do you worry too much, or do your children see you putting your trust in God and living a life that depends on him?

Can people depend on you?  Do you do what you say you will do?  Are you punctual to meetings?  Are you honest in your business dealings?  Do you keep your promises?

How do you treat your parents?  Do you show them respect, honor, and love?  Would you want your son’s wife to treat you the way you treat your mother-in-law?

Do your children see you reading the Bible and praying?  Do you have family devotionals?  Do you pray before meals?

Are you faithful to your spouse?  Do you openly show love and affection to your spouse so that your children can see the love you have for each other?  Do you speak words of encouragement and love to each other?

Do you attend church regularly with your children?  Do you complain about your church or do you work to make it a place where love abounds and Christ is exemplified?  Do your children see Christ in you?

Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children.  And walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God. Ephesians 5:1-2 (ESV)

The Martins currently present “Happy Together” marriages seminars for churches and organizations.  To schedule a seminar call Michael at 940-735-1515. They also publish a weekly “Happy Together” Blog about family and marriage issues.  You can order copies of their new books Dancing With Death and 366 Tidbits We Have Learned in 14,610 Days of Marriage, read, and subscribe to their “Happy Together” Blog by logging onto the Martin’s website at

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