Practicing Servanthood at Christmas

"Use the word 'servant' and teach children about its positive meaning in life."

Sometimes children believe that the whole world revolves around them. Parents, because they enjoy caring for their kids, may at times contribute to a child-centered mentality and unknowingly reinforce this misconception. Children then get the impression that parents, siblings, and even the family pets are there simply to make them happy. The result is demandingness and an unpleasant attitude.

One of the ways to counteract this tendency is to teach children to be servants and Christmas is a great time to practice. Planning and giving gifts, preparing food treats for others, setting the table, and cleaning up Christmas messes are all ways to demonstrate servanthood. You might have your children take turns giving out the gifts that are under the tree instead of just finding their own to open.

Practical Ways to Serve
Listening to others, watching family members open gifts, saying thank you, sharing, and looking for ways to help are all ideas for kids to demonstrate a servant attitude at Christmastime.

Use the word "servant" and teach children about its positive meaning in life. Talk about how being a servant is really a gift to others. After all, Jesus became a servant by becoming a man and coming to earth as our Savior (Philippians 2:5). 

How do you develop a servant attitude in your home? Share your great ideas in the comments section.         

At this time we want to say Merry Christmas and thank you for your support of the National Center for Biblical Parenting.

Wishing you blessings for you and your family,

Scott Turansky, Joanne Miller, and the whole National Center for Biblical Parenting Team!


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  1. Servanthood is at the very core of Christianity. Jesus was first and foremost a servant of all. He shared vision for being a servant with his disciples and then modeled it for them. This is what I've attempted to do with my children. Whenever we decided to work on a character quality with our kids, we started with vision. We'd have a parent/child meeting and share about a character quality we wanted to see grow in our son. We'd look at the Scripture first and then discuss the character quality and not just behavior. We also prayed and asked the the Lord to work in the heart of our son. The change often took some time. It didn't happen overnight. We worked with our son to develop a plan for growth in this character quality. This approach worked in our family and continues to work in many families.

    1. Let me add that we often experienced resistance. This was not easy by any means. With firmness and gentleness, we persevered.