Bad photo timing for one little duckie.
Yesterday the kids came in from the back yard full of squealy voices and excitement.
"Mooooooom! There's a mother duck and a bunch of her babies in our backyard! OHMYGOSHTHEYARESOCUTE!!"
So of course I had to investigate. And sure enough...
They were so adorable to watch! Wherever Mama duck went, all her little babies would follow. When Mama stopped, they stopped. When Mama sat, they sat. When Mama walked, they walked.
I am not sure how in the world they ended up in our backyard, or even in our neighborhood for that matter. I actually saw a mother duck crossing a busy road with her ducklings about a month ago. Cars were stopped, there was traffic backed up, and I couldn't see why except that there were two guys in the road. When we started moving again, there they were - mother duck and babies waddling down the sidewalk, unharmed.
And because I know God teaches me in parables, I wondered if there was a lesson in all of this for me. Here's what I decided. Just like those baby ducklings, my kids watch everything I do. Their actions are a reflection of my actions. I love when I see them doing the things that I love, like music and theater and reading and writing. But I don't love it so much when they do things like put themselves down or speak unkindly to others. If I'm being honest, both the good and the bad are a reflection of what they see me do.
So, like this mother duck that visited our backyard for a while yesterday, I need to remember that my babies (they love being called that) are watching, listening and learning from every thing that I do. I'm not saying that I need to take personal responsibility for every bad choice they make, because they ultimately decide for themselves what they will or will not do, but I can try my best to be an influence for good and hope it guides them in their choices.
I love how you can see the duckling trying to jump onto the platform at :05 and the mom just waits for the little guy to figure out what to do. Then at about :11 he comes running in from the side.