If you have school age kids like me you are probably inundated with anti-bullying events, programs and discussions in your child’s school. It is the growing trend to teach kids the negative aspects of bullying and how to get help if you are bullied at school. It is a serious problem in our schools and it’s correct to address it. However, is bullying a symptom of our society going it alone without faith and a belief in God?
Now I am sure we can all recall that bully classmate in our school. Maybe we have stories of being bullied ourselves or teased in a way that left an emotional scar. Peer pressure, teasing and fights; they are a part of the growing up process. I tell my kids that some people never grow out of that bullying attitude. Even adults have to deal with bullies. My advice to them is to surround themselves with those that are kind. I teach them to remember that bullies are mean because there is something inside of them that hurts enough to make them want to hurt others. It’s a simple, common sense message that reflects the heart of God and the scriptures. Remember all those Sunday school lessons we learned in church? They were once the anti-bullying campaign.
Is there a correlation between the absence of church life and a foundation of faith in our homes and the increase in bullying? Do our schools have to teach kindness and character building because so many parents fail to do it at home? These are questions I constantly ask myself both as a parent and a teacher. Our teachers do more than teach academics. They are now supposed to help a student identify the difference between negative and positive character traits. I have news for all my kids’ teachers. That is not their job. My children are a reflection of my parenting. If they fail to treat others less than kind than that is my responsibility. My parenting is also a reflection on how I treat others and my walk with God. When I fail to follow the scriptures and treat others the way I want to be treated, my children see my example and follow it.
Is the increase in bullying symptomatic of the lack of parenting? Again, so many questions and I really don’t know the answers. However, I do know that there is a book that develops a person’s character. This book teaches the greatest character building stories, even for young kids, to help them learn that life is not about living for your-self but living for God and for others. The Bible is the first and official anti-bullying campaign. Schools can develop wonderful character building programs and try and decrease the bullying that unfortunately happens in our schools. However without God, the Bible and the foundation of faith, I fear our children will be dealing with the bullying problem for many more years. Is the increase in bullying symptomatic of our society’s rejection of God? I know the answer to this one… YES!