I have spoken to two friends this last week with 7 year old girls. They both came to me with the same story, “my daughter is making comments about being fat and ugly or expressing fears about becoming fat and ugly.” We are living in a day and age with media and society reaching our children and influencing them at younger and younger ages. It is so sad to see the damage that our model obsessed culture is having on our children of all ages. So, what do we do about it?
Obviously, when our children make comments we can oppose them with the truth. “You are beautiful” “You are smart” “You are special” However, what is going to make a difference in the long run is to speak MORE truth into our kids than the lies that are being poured over them on a daily basis. An encouraging word spoken on its own is worth more than an encouraging word that is spoken in reaction to a negative one. Don’t wait until your child speaks up to speak truth into them. Take the opportunity; take EVERY opportunity to speak the truth over your children to counterbalance the lies of the world. To combat negativity speak and pray encouraging words and scriptures over our children. We need to create habits and develop patterns of consistently pouring words of encouragement into our kids. What is going to help you put this into practice in real life? Set reminders in your phone, buy some nice stationary and place it in a spot where you will see it often to remember to right a note, print out the list of verses in the post titled “God Loves Me” and cut it up and slip one verse per day into their lunch. There are a few ideas…how are you going to put this into practice in your life?
When choosing our encouraging words, let’s speak to appearance but not limiting to appearance. Speak to appearance, character, ability, personality, intelligence, uniqueness, and how you enjoy their company. Speak the truth of how God sees them.
Here are some truths found in Ephesians:
- You are a saint. (Ephesians 1:1)
- You are sealed with the Holy Spirit (1:13-14)
- You are seated with Christ (2:6)
- You are set apart to serve. (2:10)
- You are loved by God. (3:17-19)
I have posted a list of many more truths about how God loves us. See “God loves me”
Our small step that we can take today is to speak encouraging words to our children every chance we get. Write a note, post or send a message with Facebook, send a text, speak them privately and publicly. Please share some comments with your ideas of how you will speak or pray encouraging words and scriptures over your children. How will you create habits and establish patterns of encouragement in your home?
So so true! its crazy to think that 7 year olds and even younger already have so much emphasis on the way they look and think that their image defines their worth. This is why as friends, teachers, parents…or even just someone who works with youth should be more aware of this and find small or big ways for the truth to shout louder than the lies. Also, we should be aware to also the way we view ourselves, because we cant speak truth over these young women if we believe the lie that we arent beautiful in our own mind and hearts.
So this is why we can partner with young girls and say “Hey, I understand how you can feel that way, I sometimes do too” But with that…replace the lie with truth with all these scriptures you gave. I love it! I also love that you sid take EVERY opportunity to speak truth so that we are overflowing with praise and love.
Thanks for sharing!
Thanks for your input, Jamie. Great reminder that ANYONE can speak encouragement into a young person’s life.
Amen! It’s so sad to see how important outward beauty is at such a young age and it’s so good as a parent (or anyone who works with kids) to do what it takes to encourage them and remind them how beautiful God created them to be (especially young girls) before they fall into the lies of the world about reaching a certain ideal image of beauty that is so unrealistic!