Since we are Independent Fundamentalist Mormons, we hold family worship in our own home on Sunday. Vicki, Valerie and I take turns teaching the little children lessons. Two weeks ago the lesson was on “keeping your word” or your promises. Joe also taught a lesson to the older children on the same subject.
I explained to the kids about what it means to keep your word, to both yourself and other people. We also discussed the meaning of Integrity. As we talked, each of the little children shared something they wanted to focus on in their lives. Boston (5 years) decided he did not want to slap his sisters when he got mad, Angelina (6 years) wanted to say her prayers every night, Vanessa (6 years) planned to read a book each day, and Allie (8 years) had committed to “not being mad when Vanessa sticks her feet on me in the night.” I was amazed at their depth and awareness at such a young age.
All week as everyone worked on their commitments; there was buzz around the house about keeping your word and having integrity among the adults and kids as well. The next Sunday, I asked each child how it had gone for them. When it was Allie’s turn, she didn’t want to talk about it and obstinately folded her arms. My guess was it had not gone too well for her and Vanessa. I explained to her that everyone has challenges at keeping their word and that it was alright to admit.
Allie flopped on the floor and dramatically exclaimed, “I just want to go back to regular life before we always had to have integrity! What is the big deal? Everyone is always talking about integrity, integrity, integrity! I am sick of it!”
I couldn’t help but laugh. Again I was amazed; this time about how similar we adults can be to kids.