Children are imitators, especially little children. They watch every move and copy our attitude and actions. Children are mirrors of our lives. That should terrify us! J In a positive way it should make us more aware of our own words and actions.
Did you ever play COPYCAT? I did—a lot! I am the oldest of four children and my father was a traveling salesman. We went on road trips often and there was no TV, no DVD player, no cell phone, no hand-held electronic anything in the car. We played games. “I spy ” for miles, “copycat” until our mama begged us for the “quiet game.”
As “Miss PattyCake”, I even have a “Copycat” song! And, I always refer to the verse, Ephesians 5:1 (AMP): “Therefore become imitators of God (copy Him and follow His example), as well beloved children (imitate their father);” “Imitator” is a big word for a little person, and often the best way to explain a word is to show them. “Here—imitate this, do what I do . . . be a copycat.” Jesus did this all the time. He told stories, He used illustrations, and probably He played games with children.
The next time you are trying to teach your children something new, something they should copy, you can use a game! Remember the famous words of Mary Poppins, “In every job that must be done there is an element of FUN. You find the fun and SNAP, the job’s a game.” You can even sing this game; here is Miss PattyCake’s “Copycat” song:
This and that, copycat,
Whatever I do you do it, too.
It’s a little game where we do the same . . .
Okay—here we go!
Pat your head, swing your arms around,
Shake your shoulders, up and down.
Pat your tummy, count to three
Clap together and sing with me!
Children love to play games, especially if music is involved. So sing this game, and ask your children to copy you. Then you copy Jesus. What did Jesus do? Jesus went about doing good. He walked in love. Now you and your children are living the very next verse!
“Watch what God does, and then you do it, like children who learn proper behavior from their parents. Mostly what God does is love you. Keep company with him and learn a life of love. Observe how Christ loved us. His love was not cautious but extravagant. He didn’t love in order to get something from us but to give everything of himself to us. Love like that.” Eph. 5:2 (MESSAGE)
See? It’s all about being a copycat. How do we copy God? We look at the life of Jesus. Read what Jesus did, and you’ll learn that He mostly just loved people. He went about doing good and helping others. Let’s copy that!
IDEAS WORTH IMITATING
- Practice Gratitude. Give thanks in all things (Colossians 3:16–17).
- Practice Prayer. Talk to God out loud. . . . Ask, seek, knock ( Matthew 7:7).
- Practice Serving. Do service projects with your kids because “faith without deeds is dead,” (James 2:26).
- Practice Bible Memory. Learn scripture together, sing the Word, “I have hidden your word in my heart” (Psalm 119:11).
- Practice Family Worship. Make time to thank, praise, teach, and worship the Lord as a family (see Deuteronomy 6:6–7).
(find Miss PattyCake’s “Copycat” song on ITUNES, or on her Fun Songs video ($4.99) www. misspattycake.com)