"People who shrug off deliberate deceptions, saying,
'I didn't mean it, I was only joking,'
are worse than careless campers who walk away
from smoldering campfires."
Proverbs 26:18-19 (The Message)
So, parents - how many times have you ever heard one (or all) of your children say, "But, I was just joking!" when they get caught being mean to a sibling or a friend? If you're anything like me, you've heard it more times than you want to admit. I have one child who says this every.single.time he gets busted being mean with his siblings. It makes me want to scream! I have told this child that from now on I will not accept that answer. I mean seriously, would the Hot Shot Fire Crews accept an answer of, "Well, I didn't MEAN to start a forest fire when I left my campsite without putting the fire all the way out?" Uh.. No. The person gets the bill for the cost of fighting the forest fire! So, the child should get the consequence for his behavior.
I just haven't figured out a good consequence yet. Any tips?
Needless to say - my kids will be memorizing this verse. They ALL do this, just one does it more than the other.