Monday, October 26, 2015

What are you reporducing in others?

Last week I shared my lunch hour with a coworker and was given the most interesting quote. She said it is something that her father has always told her.
“You can teach what you know, but you can only reproduce who you are”
I’ve rolled this around in my head for the better part of a week now, and I still don’t have a complete set of thoughts on it, but I have noticed it to be true in my life and in the lives of those who we have ministered to over the years.
Children DO what their parents DO, not what their parents TELL them to do. I saw this over and over again when we were in youth ministry. Children mimic what they see and hear at home. Of course they may rebel and act out on their own or likewise may rise above the way they are raised. Still overall, children talk and act like their parents. For example, they most always treat people the way their parents treat people.
As an adult I see that the people I surround myself with do still “rub off” on me, and I on them. I got really tickled when a coworker said, “Oh my goodness that is so stinkin cute!” As soon as she said it, her eyes got really big and she pointed her finger at me and said “YOU did that to me!!!!! I never said “stinkin” til I came to work here! This is your fault!” It still makes me giggle a little. I do use "stinkin" as my adjective choice when describing something as very cute, very funny, or very... whatever. That is just one of many examples. If you have ever been around anyone, you know how this works, but I’ve never heard it explained the way my coworker’s dad explained it.
“You can teach what you know, but you can only reproduce who you are”
So, on one hand, this tells me that I need to be careful who let into my “inner circle”. I need to be careful who I let influence me. That's nothing new.  Mom’s been telling me that as long as I’ve been able to choose friends.
There is something else to this. Something I haven’t quite worked through…
I need to look at the people closest to me…the people I invest in…the people I “teach”. I KNOW what I am teaching them….but I wonder, what am I reproducing? I don’t have an answer for that yet, and I am not sure that I will elaborate on it here when I do.
Even so, I want to challenge you to look at the people you “rub off” on… your spouse, your kids, your coworkers, your close friends and ask yourself the question:
What am I reproducing in them?
 
Something to think about!

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