I want my children to come to me when they’re having difficulty resolving a problem. If I’m like my esteemed and more experienced sister-in-law Martha, I’ll give my children strategies for solving their problems, and send them back to try again, only intervening when all resources have been exhausted. I like this approach, and I try to imitate it.
Simply coming for help isn’t a problem, although it might look like a tattletale in progress. With my preschoolers, I haven’t seen the need to address being a tattletale, although it comes up from time to time. For some reason, though, I feel the need to defend to myself the practice of problem solving.
What will help me is if I think through the issue biblically. If you look at a concordance, tattletale isn’t in the Bible. But there are motives directly addressed in the Bible that I can look for.
- Being happy when your enemy (or sibling) gets in trouble (Rejoice not when thine enemy falleth, and let not thine heart be glad when he stumbleth: Proverbs 24:17)
- Not being willing to overlook minor offenses (not loving) (Hatred stirreth up strifes: but love covereth all sins. Proverbs 10:12)
- Sowing discord, telling lies (Proverbs 6)
These are the real issues, and ones that I can deal with. Can you think of any more that would apply? Tomorrow I’ll think about biblical reasons to come for help.