Patience: A Lesson Learned from My Children



You and I can learn a lot from our children, if we’re willing to listen.  But all too often, when our kids point out something we say or do that’s wrong or inappropriate, we discard their comments and, sometimes, even get defensive.

My 16 year old son, Marky, and I were in the grocery store.  The cashier wasn’t moving as quickly as I wanted.  I got a bit impatient. I said, “Do you need some help?”  The words I used weren’t so bad.  But what was bad, was the condescending tone I used.

Marky didn’t say anything in the store, but when we got into the car he pointed out how impatient I was with the clerk. My quick defensive response would have been to say, “I was not, they were just being slow and not doing their job well.” Instead, I caught myself and said, “You’re right, I was impatient and shouldn’t have talked down to the person like that.” I then told my son to always let me know when I’m impatient with someone.  At that point, I probably should have gone back into the store to apologize to her, but I didn’t think about it as I was being humbled by my son!

When you exceeded the speed limit, did your child ask you why you were in such a rush? Did they call you on the carpet when you lied about their age at the movie theatre just to get a cheaper ticket? Or, what about when you were rude to the waitress…did they sheepishly ask you why?

Are you listening to your children?  What have you learned from them?  Please share your comments with me.

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

  • Dave Schroeder

    Mark, thank God our kids call us out for who we are; the good and the bad. I’m so thankful for my kids and how they have taught me a whole new level of patience. I fail in that daily but they remind me to slow down and trust God. That ultimately helps me be a better father. Great post, Mark.

  • Mark Merrill

    Thanks Dave and thanks for joining in….

  • Van Baird


    I don’t think there’s enough room to comment about all the things my daughters have taught me. How bout a Top 3 list?

    3. Time is more valuable than money
    2. Laughter cures a lot of illness
    And the number one thing I’ve learned from my girls:
    1. Time with my Heavenly Father is the best way to be the best Daddy

  • Mark Merrill

    Go Van!

  • Huda79

    I’ve learned to watch my self more,to count every step I take, my language, to be polite and positive all the time.It’s so amazing how easy the children can pick up after you, positives and negatives things that we do in every day in our life.

  • Lamont J.

    My son at the age of 9 showed me how I would come home from work frustrated, and would place my bag down a greet the kids with a somber hello, after his role reversal on showing me how he’d like me to enter the house; I now greet them all with a smile, hug and ask how was their day. My son is now 21 years old and I strive to learn from them as best as I can.

  • teacherpreacherTip

    The number one thing I’ve learned from my children is that they’re always watching. This fact has forced me to reflect on negative actions and ensure that I handle others with patience more because my children will repeat the actions both good and bad that I display.

  • angie

    I believe that each day brings something new to be learned. I have learned from our girls becoming a good listener, how to trust in God first and all things will follow. Remember that life is precious filled with the ones we love, life is love and we have to treat others as if they are priceless jewels.

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