Thursday, March 17, 2005

Bickering, bloodsport of siblings

I just saw a copy of the LA Times laying around and noticed a headline on the Home section: Bickering, bloodsport of siblings by Robin Greene Hagey. As a parent it caught my eye. As a Christian, the parallels were obvious.

The caption under the headline reads: "You should worry if your kids aren't squabbling, say the experts. Home is the lab where children can try out behaviors." So does God worry when we're not bickering amongst our fellow siblings in the family of God? Is the church a lab where we should try out new ways to not get along? I don't think so.

I can relate to the frustration parents feel when their kids bicker with bloodsport enthusiasm, but I don't excuse it any more than I believe God excuses us believers when we do it with each other. The article focuses on the fact that sibling bickering is natural, but natural doesn't equate to good.

If seeing our kids bicker is truly a good thing, as this article (and its quoted expert) suggests, then we parents ought to encourage it. I, for one, don't--and while my six homeschooled kids do bicker (like all siblings)--they are appropriately discouraged from doing so. As a result, they truly love each other and enjoy the company of their siblings--most of the time.

Such it should be among the children of the King, I surmise. But, no doubt, many experts would say otherwise.

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