Marketers get it. Kids love what they know.
The other day Price said, “How come every toy they give at McDonald’s is from a movie?”
To which I responded, “Because if you play with the toy and see movie posters hanging everywhere, when the movie comes out you beg your mom and dad (relentlessly) to see it.”
Quade’s music teacher shared the same idea with me: Children love what they know. She hoped her students would know and then love quality music. She wanted us to play classical music in our homes. To sing hymns during family worship (wish I could say we have formal times of family worship). She claimed the more quality music they knew, the more they would crave it. I honestly didn’t believe her.
Let’s call a spade a spade. My husband is a big alternative rock fan. I’m partial to top 40 dance hits. Of course our boys have heard their fair share of pop culture music. After-dinner dance parties occur frequently. But sitting around singing hymns? Choosing to listen to Bach over Muse? Just couldn’t picture it.
Then it happened. While eating Eggos & squeezable yogurt, Quade and Price began singing, “Be thou my vision oh Lord of my life….” I almost dropped my coffee mug.
Soon after, Quade asked, “Mom, do we own a hymnal?” (yes my jaw dropped to the floor).
Having recently cleaned out our extra office/storage/random room, I vaguely remembered seeing an old college hymn book. I dusted it off and handed it to the boys. They immediately sat down and flipped through the pages. Quade exclaimed, “I found it! I found it! Oh for a thousand tongues to sing!”
Price asked, “Mommy will you play the music on the piano for us?” I stood with my mouth wide open. Because before today, every time I played the piano they yelled, “STOP that loud sound! You are being too noisy. Stop mommy. Stop!!!”
In awe and excitement, I securely placed the stiff hymnal up on the piano music ledge, balancing it perfectly to keep my spot. As I pushed down the staccato chords, instead of “stop it!!!”, I heard sweet little boy voices singing gorgeous poetry honoring God. Were these the same boys I had labeled “wild” and “out-of-control”?
A few weeks ago when I came home from my conference, I found this sitting on the kitchen counter:
Quade had carefully tabbed all his favorite hymns.
So apparently McDonalds and the music teacher were right, kids love what they know.
I argue the same is true for adults.
I didn’t know I liked to crochet until a family friend took the time to teach me. Years later when I picked back up the yarn & crochet hook, I had to study and learn the acronyms for each stitch so I could read a pattern. My love grew as I knew more and could crochet more.
As a little church-going, good-girl, I could list off all the books of the Bible, forwards…and backwards (no kidding). But knowing the labels for the books of the Bible is not the same as knowing the author the Bible. The more I knew Him through reading His words, the more I grew to love Him.
Now I crave time with Him…because I love Him. Not because I have to spend time with Him. It’s not a requirement. I’m motivated because I know Him. I love what I know.
The more you study His plan from Genesis to Revelation you can’t help but be drawn to Him. He is seeking to make all things new. To redeem that which has been broken. To bring us back to Himself. He loves us that much.
“Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.” (1 John 4:8)
What is something you know and, therefore, love?
We each only have 24 hours in every day to learn and to know, what are you focusing on knowing?
Praise God Heather, what a precious encouragement for the boys to be in love with hymns! And encouragement to me to focus on the Word of God, my desire is to be able to spend more time in the Word, I love it. The love what you know concept awakened something in me—Thank you sweet friend. nancy
thanks nancy! means so much coming from you. Thankful you were encouraged. 😉
Loved reading this post! How would you encourage other moms to teach their kids song, hymns, and spiritual songs now?
thanks alice! the awesome part about “bragging” about my boys’ love of hymns is I had nothing to do with it. I think for them it’s having the “hymn of the month”, the idea that “all their friends sing hymns”, and the reinforcement they got when they started singing them around the house. Price was shocked when he found out I knew the hymns he knew. I also pulled up Youtube videos of worship artists’ versions of the hymns. Curious to hear if any other mom has successfully instilled a love of classical music/ hymns in her children without the influence of an outside school/church.
Very inspiring and eye opening! Thanks for sharing 🙂