Thursday, January 21, 2010

How Much is Too Much? (Taming the Electronic Monster 2)

I think we just live in a "too much" society.  There is nothing like the suffering in Haiti to remind us of just "how much" we have.  So, what if you, as a parent, are strategically, thoughtfully, stealthily, and consistently trying to move your family to step back from electronic disengagement and back into relational engagement with each other and with important things like well, helping people in Haiti.

1.  Plan a family meeting.
2.  Share a news article or web article from Haiti ( Be careful about the content depending on your child's
     age). 
3.  Ask "What can we do as a family?"  Solicit ideas because that creates ownership.
4.  If no ideas are forthcoming... ask, "Would it help to know what some other people are doing?"
5.  Be ready.  I have listed some sources below that might be helpful.  Your family could
  • Raise money through a garage sale, or by listing unwanted items for sale in the newspaper (in our area anything under $100 is free). 
  • You could involve family, friends and neighbors in collecting material goods (make sure you know how you will get them to Haiti)
  • Become involved in supporting a child or family long term through World Vision
  • Particpate in local fundraisers or drives.
Material Donations:  http://www.lcms.org/pages/internal.asp?NavID=16410
World Vision: http://www.worldvision.org/
Red Cross: http://www.redcross.org/

Whatever you decide, the process of involving everyone in some way is even more important than the actual product here.  This is a chance for your family to shine and for you to pass on some great life lessons.  (By the way... avoid any lectures, threats, or "I told you so's" about the whole electronic disengagement thing - we're just working on redirection here.)

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Thank you. Your stories and comments are appreciated as we form a community that helps and encourages one another. You may contact the author, Jill Hasstedt at jhasstedt@gmail.com