To Be Like Me

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To Be Like Me


“But if anyone causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him to have a large millstone hung around his neck and to be drowned in the depths of the sea.” Matthew 18:6 (NIV)


My daughter has always loved to paint. Pictures. Rooms. Furniture. It doesn’t matter. She has always believed – and I agree – that a fresh coat of paint can make anything look new again.
That is why she was painting a bathroom in my home. It had not been updated in years and she had a great idea to paint stripes from the middle of the walls to the floor. The colors were unique and the work intricate as she painstakingly brushed each stripe free handed without using tape to mark the vertical lines. Her two year old daughter Lola sat on a tiny stool and watched every move her mother made. She would clap her hands periodically and giggle “Yeah Mommy. Good job, Mommy.”
Finally my daughter took a lunch break and we all went into the kitchen to fix sandwiches. As we sat down to eat, my daughter suddenly stopped and said “Mom, where is Lola?” Afraid of the answer, we both ran to the bathroom. The newly painted bathroom. And there was Lola, paintbrush in hand, making her own version of stripes horizontally across the wall. All the while she was giggling “Yeah, Mommy! Yeah, Lola!”
“Lola! No, no!” my daughter gasped and, grabbing the paintbrush from her, gave Lola a swat on her bottom. Lola began to cry and ran to the living room as my daughter surveyed the creation Lola had left behind on the walls.
“It’s okay,” I reassured her. “You can fix that.” But my daughter shook her head. “It’s not the wall, Mom. It’s what I just did to Lola. Did you hear her? She was only trying to be like me and do what I did. She just wanted to be like me.”
Today’s Scripture from Matthew speaks clearly and loudly as Jesus states that it would be better to sink to the bottom of the ocean and drown than to be a poor example to “little ones.” While He is talking about “little ones” who are new in their faith, it certainly applies to how we model behavior to our children as well.
Do you have children who are watching your every move? Do you find yourself smiling as you hear what they say and do because they are trying to be you or are you cringing at what you are hearing and seeing?
Consider this: when you tell someone how nice they look and when they have walked on, remark that you really didn’t like what they were wearing, what does your child learn from you? If you see who is calling on your cell phone, ignore the call and later tell the person you didn’t get their call, what behavior are you teaching?
My daughter hurried to the living room to love on Lola and to apologize for the swat. She brought her back to the bathroom and told her how much she liked her drawing and asked her to help finish the wall. They spent the rest of the afternoon laughing and painting together. “Yeah, Mommy! Yeah, Lola!”




Father, please help me to be a Christian example to my children in all things so that by watching me, they will want to know You. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.




Have you ever heard something negative your child has said and realized that it came directly from listening to you?

How did it make you feel?




Journal conversations that you have heard your children having with each other that are directly related to conversations you have had.

If they reflect a poor Christian example, apologize to your children and share Scripture as you strive to do better.




Matthew 18:6 (NIV) “But if anyone causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him to have a large millstone hung around his neck and to be drowned in the depths of the sea.”

Ephesians 5:1 (NIV) “Be imitators of God, therefore, as dearly loved children . . .”

Titus 2:7 (NIV) “In everything set them an example by doing what is good . . .”


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Copyright 2010  Nancy E. Hughes