Behaviors That Bind Us
By Charles Stanley
It would seem that in a world of such plenty, there should be great contentment. Yet even in the most prosperous countries, the opposite is true in most cases. Why are so many people unhappy, anxious, unsettled, and discontent?
First, it’s because most of the world does not know Jesus Christ personally. Second, many people, even in privileged circumstances, are living on “leftovers”— emotions and attitudes left over from the way they were raised.
For instance, those who as children felt they could never measure up to expectations are likely to experience feelings of inadequacy, rejection, and guilt as adults; they may also deal with resentment and hostility. And grownups who walk away from responsibilities or commitments when they don’t get their way are frequently the ones whose parents caved in to their every desire. This is why it’s so detrimental to respond to children’s temper tantrums by giving in to their demands.
The adult pitfall of low self-esteem often is created by a lack of childhood acceptance and affirmation. It’s important for children to learn that they are of tremendous value to Christ—their sense of security should come, not from possessions, but from a personal relationship with Him. Otherwise, they may grow into materialistic adults.
The behaviors that bind us start early. By the same token, positive mindsets can also be ingrained at a young age. Let’s take this as a strong reminder to regard children as the gifts they truly are.