Tone of Voice

We often go to a park, with a walking trail and a great swing set. The other day while we were there I saw a grandmother with her two grandsons, probably 7 and 10.  They ran straight for the swings and for the most part they behaved themselves.   The boys had toy cars and swings to play with, but I think what they really wanted was grandma's attention.

She pushed them for about as long as she could stand it, and then told them in a very gruff voice, "Behave!  I'm going for a walk, be nice while I'm gone."  She practically yelled at them.

They started immediately, "Grandma, just  a few more pushes."  "Please, stay and play." My heart hurt for those little boys.  I'm such they are a hand full and Grandma just needed a few minutes of quiet time, but her tone was so harsh.

I started thinking about my tone.  I will be the first to admit, it is not always the best.  When I'm hungry or tired, I'm grouchy and do not say things nicely.  With God's Grace I am trying to hold my tongue and ask myself before I speak, "Is this uplifting or beneficial to the hearer?"

Ephesians 4:29

Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.

Our children love us no matter how we speak to them or how little attention we give them.  I think we need to be cautious and careful with our little ones.  They will model our behavior good or bad.  Are you being the parent you hope your child will become? 

Remember yelling be nice at your kids is not the same as showing them with not only your actions but your tone of voice.