A couple of days ago we had my kids' best friends over for a playdate. My son had such a hard time sharing their toys this time! Not all the toys, just an apparently very special superman superman cape. Jimmy had such a tantrum when I took the cape from him, I had to lay him in the guestroom for a timeout, til he calmed down and could share. Even after that, he was reluctant rather than gracious, I guess you could say.
That night after our regular prayer time, when we say our regular prayers for our family, for the military, and for "all the babies in the bellies," I realized Jimmy was probably old enough to start praying some personal prayers. I told him that I understand it's hard to share, but that he can pray for God to help him get better at it. I told him God can help him with lots of things, that he can pray for God to help him learn t-ball, share with his friends, learn to read, God can even help him have patience with his sister. He seemed to be thinking about it. We'll see what happens a prayer time tonight.
Today they played with their friends again, and had a great time, no sharing problems at all. Of course, we weren't at home, with our toys at stake. But it went very well, and when we got home, Jimmy was thirsty and hungry. He tried getting some water in the kitchen and spilled it all over the floor, I handed him a bunch of paper towels, which he promptly wiped his hands on, tossed on the counter, and then he left to go play. I was too tired to chase him to come clean up, so I took the paper towels and wiped it myself.
A little later, we sat down to watch an episode of Kim Possible together while Mary napped, and Jimmy remembered he was hungry.
Jimmy: Mom, can you get me some food?
Me: (Choosing not to correct his style of asking) Sure, I suppose I can get you some food.
Jimmy: And while you are in there, you should clean up that big mess I made.
Me: Jimmy, first of all, you are talking really bossy to me, and that is not respectful. Kids don't tell grownups what they should do. Second, I already cleaned it up, but I shouldn't have. YOU should have cleaned it up!
Jimmy: But you know I don't like cleaning up big messes!
Me: I don't like cleaning up big messes either.
Jimmy: Well, you should pray about that, Mom.