In my parenting devotional reading this morning, I read about being good neighbors. More specifically, it was talking about boundaries with your neighbors and not overstaying your welcome with focus on the children and how they like to hang out at your house, or their neighbor’s house, a little too much sometimes.
I have lived in the country for most of my life now. Neighbors have been fairly scarce around us. In fact, the neighbors we have had around us either don’t have children or their religion keeps them from interacting much with outside children.
However, even with the lack of nearby children for my children to go out and play with, I have still managed to be that one Mom who has always seemed to have multiple children in her home, that weren’t hers. for very lengthy periods. My children’s close friends have, for the most part, always enjoyed being at my home and I have actually come to accept them as my non-biological children over the years. My love for them runs very deep.
While I agree that boundaries are needed for neighbors and parents need to know where their children are at all times, I have to admit that I have fully enjoyed having my second children in my life over the years. They have truly brought so much into my life that I will forever be thankful for and I look forward to continuing to have that experience over the next decade or so with my younger children and their friends/neighbors. I guess you could say that I am the exception to the rule. I truly love having children around.
A home full of laughter and the innocence of children reminds me that this world is not all evil and God has a plan in place for us all so if that makes me the “neighborhood idiot” then so be it. I will not shut my door to a child and I will not tell a child they must leave my home. My home was a gift from God and so is every child in this world.
Matthew 19: 14 – Jesus said “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.”
(Image credit: Child Safety Network)