If your kids are like mine, they have trouble appreciating the things they have. Whining, complaining, and pouting are sometimes the response to chores. It frustrates me when they are self-centered and unappreciative of their blessings. I recognize that they are still growing and developing. It is my job as a loving parent to help my children understand how truly blessed they are. Enter:
A Long Walk to Water: Based on a True Story
This book interweaves the story of two South Sudanese children, decades apart. In 2008, Nya, a young girl of the Nuer tribe, must walk miles a day to provide water for her family. In 1985, Salva*, an eleven year old of the Dinka tribe, struggles to survive in the midst of a civil war. As their stories develop and eventually intertwine, the importance of clean water is clear.
Our family is reading the book together and discussing Nya and Salva’s situation. It has been a great opportunity to learn about geography and history, but more importantly, to discuss the needs of others in comparison to the blessings of our family.
Following each chapter, the boys predict what will happen next to Nya and Salva and imagine what Nya and Salva would say to them. We then pray for children who are struggling just like Nya and Salva.
Learning about others is helping our children appreciate what they have.