My 12-year-old daughter, Amy, knew she shouldn't have said hurtful things in her email to Katelyn—but she was angry. Later, when I confronted my daughter, she lied. Amy was surprised and mortified to learn I knew the truth.
Although my daughter lost her computer privileges for a month, it was the conversation she had with me that proved to be the greatest lesson. I asked Amy if her friend Katelyn was a Christian. When Amy admitted she didn't think she was, I asked her what she thought Katelyn would say about Christians since Amy claimed to be one. "Would she want to become a Christian like you," I said, "or would she want nothing to do with church and God?"
For the first time, Amy realized how her choices could influence others. She didn't want someone to stay away from God because of how she behaved. The next day, Amy apologized to Katelyn and to me. Katelyn and Amy's relationship has since been restored, and Katelyn is now attending church with Amy.
This article appeared in the March/April 2012 issue of
Thriving Family magazine. Copyright © 2012 by Erin Austin. Used by permission. ThrivingFamily.com.
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