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January 4, 2010 by  
Filed under Family

“Dad, how much do you make in an hour?” his son asked.

“Why are you asking? Go do something else. I’m busy,” the dad replied, barely taking his eyes from the book he was reading.

But his son was persistent and he kept on asking the father. Exasperated, he told his son, “I earn $30. Now, do something else and stop bothering me.”

But the son looked at him pleadingly and said, “Can I have $30?”

The father got angry. “So that ‘s the reason why you’re asking? No, you cannot have $30 and I want you to go to your room!”

His son was sobbing as he ran to his room. Later that night, the father felt guilty so he put $30 on his son’s table. Early the next day, his son went to him and placed $30 in his hand.

“Now, can  I have one hour of your time?”

I’ve always liked this story. It’s a reminder for me to stop, think and reflect how I treat my family. Am I spending time with them or spending money so they can go bother someone else? This reminds me again and again of what the order of my priorities should be. When I went to the mall last Sunday, I saw a bunch of kids sitting in the corner, with their deft hands twiddling the minute buttons of their portable gaming gadgets, watching the game through equally minute screens while their moms were shopping elsewhere. I have nothing against those gadgets but I do believe that human contact can never be replaced.

This doesn’t just happen in malls of course. As in the story above, it more often than not happens inside our houses. We tend to get so busy preparing for this and that, that we treat our children as disturbances to our routine. This is a challenge to us parents. Mornings are the busiest times of the day, we don’t see each other at lunch, so that only makes dinner the only time we can actually spend with our family. And as we have mentioned in other articles, eating meals together is very, very important to the values formation, harmonious relations, and general well-being of your family. Don’t put it off one more day. You have to take the steps to change (if you haven’t done it already) now.

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